Open City

A re-jigged parking meter that dispenses tickets of a different kind; sweet, free things to do in YOUR city as suggested by locals.

A parking ticket you WANT to get

Open City is a celebration of undervalued, sweet, free things to do in Christchurch. It might be a good climbing tree in the Botanic Gardens, a quirky piece of street art or a great place for a picnic. These little secrets and more have been suggested by locals and visitors and can be accessed by visiting the Open City vending machine; a repurposed parking meter that is now located at Placemaking at One Central, on Manchester Street in front of the 03 Eatery (just by corner with Cashel Street).  

This unusual machine will vend you your own Christchurch secret in the form of a parking ticket as revealed by a stranger that is yours to explore and located somewhere around the central city (within the four avenues). It’s perfect way to get to know your city better through someone else’s eyes. 




Who, what, where, when

Date: July 2017 – July 2021

Locations:  03 Eatery, Manchester Street, ChCh city, near Cashel Street

Client/Funder:  All Right? & Christchurch City Council

Key people: Richard Harcourt, MAKE Collective, McCarthy, Denise Fung, Keith Robinson, John Welfare, Donovan Ryan, Richard Barnacle

Values: Experimentation, Collaboration, Participation

Support/Sponsors:  All Right? – Ciaran & Sue, Clare Piper, City Care, Underground Overground, Engineers Without Borders

Volunteers: Thanks to those who helped check the sweet, free things to do and maintain the database.

Open City is launched!

TV One – Helpful old parking meter in Christchurch’s Cathedral Square issuing tourist tips rather than tickets

Fit for any location

Christchurch locals have contributed to an online database of sweet, free things to do which feeds into the vending machine. The Open City website allows you to upload your favourite sweet, free things to do for others to discover. Learners can contribute to this project by sharing their local knowledge – these things can be anywhere in Christchurch.  

Open City is a collaboration with the All Right? Campaign

Get Open City

Open City is available for purchase and is adaptable to YOUR CITY. We can provide you with adapted parking meters and the Open City database and website ready to be populated by people in your city.