We used a survey of LA residents as a quantitative research method to get a general sense of people’s feelings about public spaces during the pandemic. Qualitative research methods, like stakeholder interviews, were conducted to gain a deeper understanding of more specific questions.
From our interviews, we discovered important insights that were reinforced with statistical information from our survey.
Due to the pandemic lockdowns getting outside is even more important, but people consistently find themselves in situations where it's too crowded and don't feel safe and comfortable when they arrive.
"We drove through traffic for an hour and spent 30 minutes finding parking. Once we got to the beach it was way too crowded. We just turned around and went home. The entire day was wasted."
Have you ever gone to a public space and felt uncomfortable or unsafe due to the COVID-19 pandemic?
People want information about crowd density because having a choice based on trustworthy information helps people feel safer and more confident in their decisions.
"I try to time when I go to make sure there's not a crowd. I always do an online search for any recent reviews that might give an indication but that's hard to find"
Would you be interested in knowing how crowded an area is prior to visiting?
We can utilize Griffith Park's existing infrastructure of security and wildlife cameras and combine it with currently available AI crowd counting technology to get real time measurements of crowd density.
How might we help people predetermine COVID-19 risk when visiting Griffith Park to minimize uncertainty and help them make informed decisions about the safety of their visit?
Once we framed the problem, we created a user persona that helped convey our research findings and design a solution.
Since COVID Monica has had to juggle working from home with taking care of and homeschooling the kids.
"We drove to through traffic for an hour and spent another 30 minutes finding parking. Once we got to the beach it was way too crowded. We just turned around and went home. The entire day was wasted."
Our first prototype was a concept storyboard of how our persona could utilize our solution to help her uncertainty about crowd density at Griffith Park.
There are many different methods to show crowd density data. We prototyped various data visualizations and created a survey to determine which ones were most useful to help users decide whether the park was too crowded.
We used the quantitative data from the survey and follow-up interviews to identify the correct mix of visualizations and help inform our design decisions.
We created a low-fidelity digital prototype to test both the flow of the app and the legibility of the crowd density information.
What is the least amount you need to properly tell the story?
Properly mixing the use of quantitative and qualitative data provided the most valuable insights.
Prototyping and testing is not just for wireframes.
The COVID pandemic forced us to adapt and create new UX methods.