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Social Design Issue???

As soon as I heard the blog prompt for this week, my initial response was, “WHAT??? Find a what? What’s a social design issue?? After thinking about it for a while, I came up with what I thought the definition was. A social design issue is simply a problem in the built environment that affects people and how they act.

Defining a social design issue was the easy part. It was finding a social design issue that proved to be the difficult task. The problem was that I was looking for something big, something that, if changed, would influence the lives of hundreds of people. Well, I had no luck finding a major social design issue because, having lived here for only a month, I’ve not yet had much time to interact with the city and its communities.

The issue I finally decided to document is not a major issue, but it definitely causes a problem. I live in Frontier Hall in the super block. Right outside Frontier Hall are two benches, both with large ash trays right next to them. Though this is a convenient place for the smokers who use these benches, it is very annoying to non-smokers who would rather not walk through clouds of smoke every time they enter or exit the building. There are many places where these benches could go that would not cause second-hand smoke issues for every resident in Frontier Hall.

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This bench outside of Frontier Hall creates a smokey atmosphere for passersby.