Portland is a noisy city, and as a musician, I love noise. The sound of a city is the sum of its cultures, from bustling streets to music in the park. These are what gives every city its own unique soundscape. But local policies can affect how noise grows and changes with the city it lives in. CitySound PDX explores how the music community might safely and openly practice and share their craft in this noisy little-big city we call home.
For Portland’s 3000+ professional musicians, the system of how noise is regulated is broken, and ripe for design intervention. Project CitySound PDX utilizes collaborative design and community-based research to create a speculative model for what an equitable and accessible noise policy system might look like. Through collaboration, we amplify the voices of those affected directly by these systemic failures, in this case musicians who are underserved under the current noise policies in Portland. Design gives agency to ideas, and when systems of oppression are built to benefit only those in power, the responsibility falls on the broader community to make change happen.