Thursday, April 7, 2011

Life in the Slow Lane

There was the sound of a truck reversing down in the alley. Then there was some banging, and voices. Always the busybody, I looked over my balcony to see what was causing the ruckus.

People were unloading plastic crates and arranging them in what seemed to be a well-planned operation. After they left I tried to work out what the structure they'd built was, but it was too dark.

By daylight the next morning, this is what I saw:

That great stencil graffiti on the wall was there already. It's not new.

This morning I climbed up to get a closer look. That red box is a small letter box.

This is the top of the red box:

and this is what I found inside:

I sat for a while and wrote in my journal, seeing the alley from a different angle.

One of my neighbours came out on his balcony and told me someone comes every evening to make sure the structure is in order. 

How mysterious.

I asked wise old Mrs Google what it was all about and under City_Leaks this is what I found:

An Urban Investigation of Inventive Dwelling
City_Leaks is a platform that seeks to inspire urban dwellers to explore moments, spaces and places that one can deposit themselves in. The challenge is to reconsider how we inhabit our cities. Why do we leave the identity of our cities solely in the hands of politicians, governments, developers and investors? Why don't we start creating, inventing and changing the cities ourselves?
City_Leaks acts as a hub for like minded people to address and share ideas as well as organize upcoming actions.
We are also interested in how urban dwellers inhabit and use our interventions, so documenting the work is essential for our research... 

If you look them up on Facebook you'll see they have other structures going up in other lanes. You could check them out if you're in the Melbourne CBD.


  1. Do you mean you could sit up there on that structure and it could hold your weight? Were you scared? Did anyone else acknowledge you? Can you go back and get FD to take a pic of you up there.
    What a great story. X

  2. I saw this Installation the other day as well. This is what the Lanes have to offer. Like your story!!!

  3. The structure is pretty stable so it's not scary at all.
    In conjunction with city_leaks, I have organized a webcam of the structure. Alas, my Internet isn't yet connected, so streaming is unavailable (unless someone in drewery lane apartments offers their wireless)...

    Video/pics coming to city_leaks soon!

  4. It is wonderful.

    blogger Vetti: Live In Northcote posted on this, and linked to Farcebook where I found your daughter's link back here ...
    Melbourne bloggers rock the net.

  5. Thanks Kate, Ann O'D, Pyro and Jay,
    I think it's creativity like this that gives Melbourne its spark - not those pseudo 'lanes' they put inside those sterile shopping centres.