dezeen loves... Public Space Shading Canopy



A group of students and graduates from the Architectural Association school in London have produced a kit that can help turn unused spaces into public amenities. Update: this project is included in Dezeen Book of Ideas, which is on sale now for £12.


Asif Khan, Omid Kamvari and Pavlos Sideris produced the Public Space Shading Canopy kit after their successful experience erecting a 15m-long lycra canopy in the slum of Favelo do Pilar in Recife, Brazil, last year.


The bright yellow awning, which was slung from telegraph poles and buildings using cables, was erected in just four hours with the help of locals and according to the designers, immediately turned the neglected thoroughfare into a vibrant public space.


The new kit, which provides shelter from sun and rain, contains all the materials and tools people need to create their own canopies. It comes in S, M, L and XL sizes.


The kits, and the Recife project, will feature in a forthcoming exhibition at the Smithsonian's Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum in New York.


Called Design For The Other 90%, the exhibition will feature designs that improve the lives of the world's poor and runs from 4 May to 27 September 2007.

>> One Year House, an exhibition of photographs of improvements to refugee housing on the Thai-Burma border by Asif Khan and Julia King, opened at the Architectural Association this week and continues until 4 February.

Posted on Wednesday January 24th 2007 at 11:19 pm by . Copyright policy | Comments policy

  • hi – great design – we would be interested to find out more please in relation to specifying for an external cafe terrace at a restaurant project in London on the Thames.
    Please can you provide details stockists/suppliers and prices and lead times

    many thanks

  • Omid Kamvari

    Hi Rachel

    I know this is late but if you are still interested in the project please do not hesitate to contact me.

    I am not sure what the beat method of contact is given that this a open forum.

    all the best

    Omid Kamvari, Ba(hons), AADipl

  • Melissa Bradley

    Hi – I was wondering how I could purchase these kits? I have a party in November – these would be perfect…….

  • nella bencini

    i am visiting greece next friday aug 17th and would like to see this fantastic concept for our restaurants in malta. i can be contacted on my email address and will be staying in athens,

    pleae reply a.s.a.p so i would not loose out on this opportunity.
    many thanks

  • omid kamvari

    Hi Nella

    Sorry i dont check this site very often,
    but please forward infromation to my personal email account

    thank you
    Omid Kamvari BA(hons), AAdipl

  • julia jeanguenat

    I’m a graphic design student at the College for Creative Studies in Detroit, MI, USA. I’m currently working on a research project about the public space shading canopy. Do you have any additional resources or information pertaining to this project that you could share with me? I would really appreciate it! Thanks!

  • Greetings, I am a Landscape Architect and a Graduate student at Harvard. I’m working with an NGO in Nicaragua and would greatly appreciate buying one of these beauties. Can the tensile material double as a stormwater catchment or funnel? is it permeable or like a poly sheet? In any case please e-mail me, I really want to test one of these out. I’ll need a reply ASAP as I’m heading down in a couple of weeks. Please get back to me at your earliest convenience. THANKS!

  • hello
    Very nice work
    we would be interested to find out more please in relation to specifying for an external cafe terrace in Los Angeles and a small outdoor seating in Chicago as well
    Please can you provide details stockists/suppliers and prices and lead times

    many thanks

  • This is exactly what we need for many of the communiy garden projects that we undertake. can you send us information about specs suppliers etc.


  • Monyette Wallace


    The canopy is a great product. I am interested in purchasing the product but it is diffucult to find. If possible could you supply a list of vendors that carry the space shading canopy.

    Thank you

  • Bob

    Fabulous… and they even throw in the adjustable wrench!

  • I love the concept, please can you give me some ore information to where I can purchase this.

  • Ada

    My interest in this product has not waned since 2007. Please, send the information needed to purchase or discuss incorporation.


  • hey, being an urban designer one of my major issues in design have been to create vibrant public spaces. Streets and nodes, here in India, hold a quality of being extensions to residential and commercial spaces.
    this seems like a fun way of creating shady and attractive public spaces. the tropical climate here and the urban morphology can accept this as a great design option. it also lends the design a much appreciated flexibility and is temporal in nature.
    great concept!! would love to know more about the material and its life span.


  • would love to merge it with a landscape of greens to generate a public realm!!

  • sally mcdermott

    This is wonderful … please could you forward information as to how to purchase,

    thanks you sally