Utne Blogs > The Sweet Pursuit

The Sweet Pursuit

Former Associate editor Margret Aldrich on the hunt for happiness, community, and how humans thrive

A Spy Camera, a Coffee Table, and a Bus Stop

table flowers

Public transportation and (welcome) social interaction don’t seem like natural companions, but Los Angeles designer and architect Julie Kim is making the bus stop a more neighborly place—and recording the results.

At a buzzing LA Metro bus stop in Koreatown this summer, Kim set up a coffee table in front of a bench for waiting patrons and covertly filmed what happened, reports GOOD. In minutes, the stylish, hand-built table—complete with a vase of flowers and a short stack of local newspapers—generated kinship and conversation between the diverse riders that gathered around it.

“The number and variety of people milling about—workers, kids, the elderly, of every ethnic group—surprised me,” Kim told GOOD. Watch a quick video of her experiment here:


Kim has more ideas for engaging the public at bus stops, like setting up exercise equipment. What other accoutrements could create meaningful interactions? Perhaps a minibar or a stack of meditation pillows, or how about a collection of secondhand musical instruments to get a bus stop hootenanny started…

Source: GOOD