Community-driven temporary public places

Quebec City is encouraging the mobilization of merchants, citizen groups and non-profit organizations to submit temporary public space projects.


The call for projects for the realization of community-based temporary places aims to support the initiatives of groups concerned to develop and animate a temporary public space.

For Quebec City, a community-based temporary space is at the very core of living together, since it contributes to the maintenance of social cohesion by encouraging citizens to take full advantage of their city by providing living environments that are safe as well as conducive to meeting, well-being and health.

A community-driven temporary square defines itself as a public space with installations that are temporary and accessible to all. Its design is inspired by the identity and characteristics of both the space as well as the community that lives around it. It acts as a place for expression, gathering, relaxation, animation and meeting, all of which contribute to the fulfillment of municipal goals in terms of living together.


  • Offer activities contributing to the enhancement of solidarity among citizens and the strengthening of the neighborhood
  • Foster positive interactions between citizens by encouraging involvement and cooperation
  • Offer a space for dialogue that is safe, welcoming and accessible to all citizens
  • Contribute to the improvement and the promotion of health and healthy lifestyle.

Observed results

Since the new program is based on the objectives of living together, each organization responsible for a temporary space was asked to evaluate an activity planned in their programming by completing an observation sheet provided by the City. The card included four questions integrating the objectives and principles of living together.

The organizations managing temporary places also took part in two participatory evaluation meetings. These meetings allowed people responsible for the program to assess the impacts of the objectives of living together in the design and implementation of temporary spaces as well as to support organizations in the setting up of their space and in the management of living together.

More concretely

  • A total of 10 grassroots temporary squares have been funded by Quebec City
  • The type of occupation and the
  • Types of occupation as well as attendance of the sites were very different from one space to another. Some people attended the space for the design and the place while others attended for the activities it offered, therefore out of interest.
  • Users have made the space and its amenities their own. It is a nice demonstration of their sense of belonging to the place.
  • A particular care has been given to the maintenance of plants and amenities, to tidiness as well as to safety of the space. There was a strong sense of pride
  • Organizations mentioned that these spaces were an ideal platform for working with citizens.
  • There has been an increase in collaboration between organizations (decompartmentalization and mutual aid, improvement and increase in human relations).
  • Temporary spaces have been an occasion for commitment and involvement for citizens.
  • A self-surveillance pattern has naturally emerged in these places. There was very little concern with security and police intervention.

List of temporary spaces


Québec City
Ms Virginie Desmarais, Advisor, Culture, Leisure and Community development