The Common Room

Step into The Common Room to bring history alive and help shape York’s future. Get involved in proposed developments and policies for the city by using our Feedback Zones. Your comments can help make sure that new developments work for York and its citizens.

The Common Room explores the potential of an 'urban room' for York (after Farrell 2014) and builds on the success of the heritage strand of StreetLife, offering residents and visitors a pathway to place-making and a continuation of the partnership between the University of York and York Civic Trust, one of the city's leading advocates for heritage-led sustainable development in the city.

Eye catching window displays lead into information boards discussing a series of themes inspired by some of the major opportunities - and challenges - raised by major development proposals for York's historic High Streets, and current policy initiatives.

Over the Spring and Summer of 2023 The Common Room is exploring four topics:

  1. The development proposals for 'Riverside' by The Helmsley Group
  2. Cultural provision in development
  3. Transport strategies for future York
  4. Sustainability

Visit The Common Room at the StreetLife Hub to reflect on each topic, share ideas and thoughts in our feedback zones and through creative activities, and be guided towards further information.

By Autumn 2023, we aim to have engaged wider and more diverse audiences in place-making, understand a future urban room could be shaped to meet the needs of the city, and share our findings with our audience as well as key policy makers and stakeholders including City of York Council and The Helmsley Group.

The Common Room is funded by The York Policy Engine (TYPE), University of York. Project Lead is Dr Kate Giles and Research Associate, Dr Jennie England. To find out more or get in touch please email or