We are working on studying the space within Drakes Circus shopping mall in Plymouth. This includes the way people react within the space and what is present in the space - visible and not visible.
I went and stood around in Drakes today for a bit to see how the space was being used. Using the two images above I have overlaid what I noticed going on over the space of 20 minutes. I was located on the middle bridge of the first level watching towards the East and the West sides from my location.
A few things I noticed:
- The bridges joining the North and South sides of the first floor level aren't used much
- The south side of the building is slightly lower
- People quite often suddenly deviate from their routes to walk into shops (so their journeys are by chance, not planned)
- People will often follow the pace of those ahead of them and subconsciously stick to similar walking patterns (almost like sheep)
- The small vendors in the middle of the bottom floor path get in the way causing a funnel effect so you have to slow down (a nuisance or great marketing?)
- People like to stick close to the walls, very few will freely walk in the middle - more exposed path seem less desirable to most
I observed all this over a 20 minute window 13:45 - 14:05 and therefore this is only a small observation. I will need to go back at various times for longer/busier periods for a more accurate representation. More to come...