Psycho-Geography: “the study of the precise laws and specific effects of the geographical environment, consciously organised or not, on the emotions and behaviour of individuals.”
After looking at psycho graphic work buy Guy Debord and the work by Mark Shepherd where he looks at suggested random routes between A+B using roads not yet walked, i decided to look at my route to an from university and explore the psycho graphic qualities of my surroundings.
I started by looking at the area past the Student Union and leading off campus, the area in the middle of campus is actually very open for a city centre, however on the outskirts of campus are the paths you can take feel very confined and are full of unattractive buildings, almost making you want to stay in the comfortable surroundings of inner campus.
On my walk home i proceeded to head off campus towards Houndiscombe Road, this is where you’re really hit with the volume of traffic produced by a working city(and at rush hour i might add!). Pedestrians running around moving cars and cars hassling around each other really generates a feel of everyone frantically trying to get home.
After clearing the busy road of North Road East, i find myself spat out onto Houndiscombe road, a very green, leafy, suburbia type road. There are less people here, but the walk is more effort, the way the trees have formed on the pavement obstruct you when someone else is walking the other way, almost like the trees are pushing you off the pavement, reclaiming there place in this concrete dessert.
After travelling down the bending road i approach Mutley Plain, back to city madness. As i approach the junction the trees stop and the buildings take over once more, hittig home that you are still in one of the biggest cities in the south west.
On the strip, its a lot to take in. Its like a mini city on a street, all kinds of shops, eateries and every supermarket under the sun, a lot of people live adjacent to this road so it has to accomadate a lot of needs. There are two types of people wandering the streets, students and locals on the way/from one of Mutley’s pubs that have a rough reputation.
With Mutley behind me, im back to what i know and love, Connaught Avenue, a quiet leafy street.
Looking at my walk in detail like this has made me think about implications of having natural green space in our cities so that we’re not bombarded with concrete everyday of our lives. I feel it would make the place feel alot more fresh as well as doing a great deal to reduce Plymouth’s carbon foot print.