Checkered Lawn
Chequerboard Lawn:  Natural Social Distancing Space

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With Coronavirus having a major impact globally, many of us have had to rethink aspects of our lives including the ways we interact with each other and the environment around us.

The green outdoors, especially during the warmer months has been a sancturary for many of us. A place away from the news and constant reminders of the global pandemic. We’ve been spending more time in our gardens, taking walks in local wildlife parks and enjoy green communal spaces, it has been a vital part of keeping our mental health in check during these difficult times.

Enjoying Green Spaces during Lockdown in a safe way.


Perhaps even more so in urban areas, where communal green spaces and parks have played a vital role as a place for people to exercise, walk and relax in a natural environment. With many other public spaces and services closed, the challenge has been for authorities to manage the increased need and the influx of people seeking green spaces.

People enjoying green spaces during the pandemic.
For many urban dwellers, a communual green space is a vital haven.

The Polish town of Elblag,  came up with a innovative solution. The architect, Adriana Kotynska, designed a way to safely accommodate visitors to its public outdoor space. She turned the town;s art gallery, overgrown lawns into a green chequerboard, mowing the grass in a pattern to create individual social distanced zones and at the same time creating a nature friendly environment.

Occupuying a former Gothic Dominican church with a large adjacent courtyard that was the monastic garden. The gallery often uses its spacious lawn to host various cultural outdoor events such as concerts, performances, exhibitions and casual meetings or just as a spot for visitors to relax. Like other places around the globe, this venue was forced to cancel its planned summer activities which included picnics and art workshops.

“It was so simple that I was almost sure that the solution had already existed somewhere else”

Said Architect Adriana Kotynska

The chequerboard pattern appears as a kind of impromptu site specific art installation–a perfect fit for a gallery known for exhibiting abstract geometric art. Although a what seem’s a simple approach, this has resonate the world over. As coronavirus continues to impact our lives, perhaps we will see further ways we adapt our enviroment to meet our changing needs.

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