Cinematica Media/Vimeo

Nearly 100,000 people signed up—360 got to ride.

Back in March, artist Luke Jerram announced his plan to turn a hilly street in the city of Bristol, England, into a 300-ft. waterslide.

Since then he managed to crowdfund the £5,621 (~$9300) needed to cover operation costs. And on Sunday, the urban slide—made of plastic sheeting, hay bales, water, and soap—came to life.

Nearly 100,000 people had signed up for a chance to ride the slide, but the event only had room for 360 lucky participants, randomly selected in a lottery. In the video below, a few of them compared it to getting a Golden Ticket to Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory.

For Jerram, the slide is an architectural intervention that reclaims streets for the people. "If you look at photographs in the 1900s you see these beautiful empty streets with all the kids playing out...It's an extraordinary thing and all that has been taken away,” he told the BBC.

About the Author

Most Popular

  1. Perspective

    In a Pandemic, We're All 'Transit Dependent'

    Now more than ever, public transportation is not just about ridership. Buses, trains, and subways make urban civilization possible.

  2. Coronavirus

    The Post-Pandemic Urban Future Is Already Here

    The coronavirus crisis stands to dramatically reshape cities around the world. But the biggest revolutions in urban space may have begun before the pandemic.

  3. photo: San Francisco Municipal Transit Agency employees turn an empty cable car in San Francisco on March 4.
    Transportation

    As Coronavirus Quiets Streets, Some Cities Speed Road and Transit Fixes

    With cities in lockdown and workplaces closed, the big drop in traffic and transit riders allows road repair and construction projects to rush forward.

  4. photo: A cyclist rides past a closed Victoria Park in East London.
    Perspective

    The Power of Parks in a Pandemic

    For city residents, equitable access to local green space is more than a coronavirus-era amenity. It’s critical for physical, emotional, and mental health.

  5. Equity

    These States Are Sowing Confusion About Cities’ Power to Fight Covid-19

    Mixed messages on the legal concept of preemption are confusing cities that want to pass stronger Covid-19 actions, like closed beaches and shelter in place.

×