COMING UP | Our Global Trend Events 🌎

August — October

Bangkok, Amsterdam, New York

Join us

An urban planner and 37 kids reimagine the classic playmat as a human-centric city

Iconic children's toys like city playmats have long shaped young minds to view car-centric urban environments as the norm. A new project aims to reimagine this formative play experience through a more human-oriented lens. The Little Big Playmat swaps out the typical overabundance of roads and parking for ample green spaces, accessible public transit, protected bike lanes and shared mobility hubs.

Developed by a 'think tank' of kids aged 5–13 alongside urban planner Lior Steinberg, the playmat counters the unspoken yet pervasive message that private vehicles should be the top priority in city design — a message introduced early on through toys and children's books. Instead, The Little Big Playmat highlights elements that reduce emissions and pollution while promoting healthy lifestyles, like walking, cycling or taking public transit from residential neighborhoods to nearby shops and parks.

The Little Big Playmat was commissioned by shared mobility app Bolt, which released it as an open-source design and is encouraging manufacturers to produce and sell the mats.

Trend Bite

Infrastructure for private cars is an inherently inefficient use of public space, which is only compounded by a rise in autobesity (in the UK, for example, over half of new vehicles are too wide for many on-street parking spaces). Around the world, residents and policymakers are increasingly interested in transforming cities from places for cars into places for people. Bolt's playmat is a storytelling device for human-centric urban planning. Which novel narrative tool could your brand implement to shift mindsets and inspire systemic change?

Innovation of the day

Spotted by: Reinier Evers