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Smooth Commuting: XD Students Win Mad*Pow Health Challenge

Deirdre Nichonaill, Estefania Ciliotta, and Houjiang Liu

Project description:

The commuting population is vital for business and the economy of Boston and Massachusetts. People who live in the surrounding areas but work in the city struggle daily with long commuting times — more than ninety minutes one way. The cumulative effects of this extreme commuting is detrimental to peoples’ health over time and has potential knock-on effects on the local economy. The project Smooth Commuting develops a plan to redesign the Boston commuter rail system in order to mitigate some of these negative effects. The solutions offered seek not only to impact commuters’ health in positive ways, but to envision a pleasurable commuting experience.

Our Design Journey:

Stef, Houjiang and I were looking forward to the summer but also wondering how we could practice the skills and apply the knowledge we had been learning all semester. A call from Mad*Pow — a design agency that strives to help people improve their lives and connect — asking designers to consider how we might build health into our everyday environments, piqued our interest.