UrbanBlocks (Engagement)

Want to play together? Contact us here

Our community is passionate about its city. And so are we.

Sponsored by the City of Toronto’s Planning Division, we created UrbanBlocks, a jumbo-sized board game that helps inspire a more informed and positive conversation around urban development. We’ve engaged over 300 children and parents to date, and helped reduce the fear and defensive response to development by engaging the participants in the process of city-building.

Productive public discussion about how we build our cities is critical to transforming cities successfully. Unfortunately, usually, the conversation is neither informed nor outcome-oriented. We strive to address that by engaging the participants and their parents in a (simplified) conversation about how cities function through direct problem-solving and conversation.

We’ve already played with:

>>Read Sidewalk Labs’ report  >>Read Azure’s Article

How to win?

The first group to assemble a complete Urban Block containing all the required uses wins!

The Board (4×6 ft):

How to play?

Locate your pieces at ‘Start Here’.

On your turn, roll two dice, one for the number of steps on the north-south axis, the other for the number of steps on the east-west axis. You can choose if you move north or south, and east or west (so there are four possible movements for each roll).

Landing on an intersection will assign you with a specific land use “building piece” depending on the colour of the dot. You will use the building piece to build your Urban Block.

Take the Subway: if on your way you pass through a subway station on a line that goes in the direction of your movement, you can use the subway to make a shortcut to any other stop on that line, and it will be counted as a single step.

Use Bike-Share: if you land on a bike-share station, you can move to any other bike-share station and take the use based on its colour.