PROUD Zoners Re-Visited

After using the zoners in their original form at a few public events, Helen Ryan, Public Realm Development Manager from Lancaster City Council found that some extra features would be useful

The Zoners were co-designed with Helen Ryan last year as a creative consultation toolkit that she could ‘Grab & Go’ on her way to public consultation events. The improvements were things that were discussed during the original design process but we couldn’t incorporate them at that time due to various project constraints.

There were three main priorities for developing the zoners:

  1. Ability for Helen to ask a question or put up a sign on or around the zoners.
  2. A way for members of the public to add their comments, thoughts and ideas onto / near the zoners.
  3. New base for using the zoners on hard ground. Sometimes consultations are held in playgrounds or other areas without grass and the existing spiked base can’t go into the ground.


Helen, Gemma Coupe and I worked together in a co-design session to kick-off this phase of the project. Helen gave lots of great feedback and insight into how the zoners worked and what it was like using them in a real-life situation. We used this information to work out the three priorities listed above.

Once the project objectives were agreed, we then used the PROUD Hexagons, prototyping and sketching to map out the design needs and potential solutions.

The team then went through an incremental process of prototyping, review and revision which led us to the final outcomes. This was an experimental project and we learnt from any mistakes to produce an even better product at the end.


  • The map pin zoners now have perforations across the Foamalux fins – this allows Helen to attach the arrow signs and members of the public to attach comments.
  • Large ‘treasury tags’ are used to attach comments onto the zoners. These are stored, along with pens for writing comments, in a bespoke box that attaches to the wooden post.
  • Correx (fluted polypropylene) arrow shapes have PVC pockets for signage.
  • New bases were made for the zoners to be used on hard ground.

We’re looking forward to testing these modifications with members of the public once the British weather improves!