Anchor Project: Knock Stop Music

Because the other side of the street might as well be the other side of the world – Knock Stop Music is a communication system that connects the two sides of Market Street.


Description: Knock Stop Music re-appropriates traffic lights to invite passersby to play with their environment, creating melodic soundscapes that brings awareness to one another. Amidst the constant rumble of the street, the simple gesture of knocking transforms the raw fabric of the city into an interface for creative collaboration.

Made for humans, by humans (and with the help of a few amazing machines @Pier 9).

Knock Stop Music

Knock Stop Music started with a desire to connect the two sides of Market Street. As a street with aspirations to become pedestrianized one day, we wanted our intervention to help with the transition phase – rallying the two sidewalks so they can start feeling like one. We see in this exercice the potential to create serendipitous encounters between people and encourage collaboration amongst strangers. We’d be creating invisible bridges, and where else but in a city renowned for its famous larger-than-life bridges.

Traffic signs. The project uses traffic signs – that originally grew out of a necessity to communicate with cars – and repurpose them for pedestrians. Knock Stop Music hi-jacks traffic lights, creating a human scale, emotional, poetic communication system to enhance connection between humans.

Music. These connections could happen through various means: we explored morse code, giant emoticons, secret handshakes or music. Given our recent experience with – and love for – music, we went for the latter. Traffic lights now have an interface for anyone to work together and transform a section of Market Street in a bit of a block party.