Yasmin wearing Picnic Gingham Shirt (Pink)
Location: Seapark/Taman Paramount, PJ
With the help of Studio-Asean leading the walk, we identified hints of Le Corbusier's design influence as we explored the neighbourhood! Read on to discover more.
What is Jane’s Walk KL...and who is Jane?!
Jane Jacobs was an urbanist from New York in the 60s who completely changed the way we look at cities. She was an incredible writer, and through her observations from exploring the city she produced ‘The life and death of Great American Cities’, A timeless book that’s used not just by those in the built environment, but sociologists, and I recently found out, in film studies too!
..because of all the amazing things she’s done, people commemorate her birthday in May by organising Jane’s Walks all around the world.
You initiated Jane's Walk KL in May 2019 with your friend, Awatif. Tell us how it came about!
Well, I was doing my masters in Urbanism last year in London and made a brilliant friend who shared my love for Jane. She found out about Jane's Walk and we noticed that KL didn’t have a City Organiser yet so I signed myself up and created Jane’s walk KL.
I’ve known Awatif since the days I was working with #BetterCities in KL, she volunteered at our events and as fate would have it, we reconnect in London as she was doing her Masters last year as well! When I decided to do Jane’s Walk I gave her a call and she shared the enthusiasm to get involved!
The first walk was so much fun and people showed such positive feedback that we decided to turn it into a monthly thing. Especially since walkability in KL is something we don’t have a platform to talk about yet.
Charmaine is now part of our 3-women team. A real dream team in making these walks happen.
Le Corbusier 5 Points of Architecture:
Last weekend’s walk at Taman Seapark was the 5th edition. Which neighbourhood has been your favourite exploring so far?
Ah that’s a tricky one. Each walk becomes my favourite as each neighbourhood is unique and it’s always a different group dynamic.
Seapark was great though and the first walk that we managed to get a local of that community to lead. So being a ‘participant’ for once was really enjoyable.
I live next to Sungai Way actually so that’s kind of my area. We did our third Jane’s Walk there and I really loved exploring my own backyard. Now every time I go past it I notice something I wouldn’t have done before. It really is amazing how much MORE you see when you walk and how much getting to know your neighbourhood, just digging things up online really changes your sense of place and belonging.
Where can people sign up for your upcoming walks?!
Social media is our go to place. Usually our Instagram, @janeswalkkl where we post things up first, then Facebook. We keep our walks quite intimate, 20 people max so slots do fill up quite fast.
Yasmin wearing Picnic Gingham Shirt (Pink)
You are deeply passionate about urban planning and rejuvenating the city. What do you want to see more of in Malaysia?
Hmm.. where do I start. More meaningful conversations I guess, connecting the dots so we can turn our conversations into action. There’s a lot of roadblocks here to do even a small positive thing. So I would say, a collective voice to show people care about the city is crucial. And knowing how and where to channel that. I want to see:
1) less of a divide between people and local authorities. More transparency and proactivity.
2) more of the right types of trees planted specifically to aid walking. And with that more people walking and cycling.
3) more Janes Walks! The idea is that people in their respective neighbourhoods leads the walks (and we come in to assist). So anyone who wants to share their hood and explore it together by foot, please get in touch with us!
A fun one! What’s your favourite Instagram follow?
Ahhh my friends' are my favourites. Haha
And some artists including @tilly_hemingway_ceramics
What do you love doing even when you don’t have to?
Making maps. Really into making maps even when the person doesn’t really need or want a map.
The weekend is approaching! What book(s) should we all be reading right now?
Ah I’m just finishing The Namesake by Jumpha Lahiri. It’s so good! A classic which I’ve really enjoyed.