YELLOW DESIGN FOUNDATION is a multidisciplinary, European and interregional platform for research and information on community oriented design. Our main fields of activity are mobility, urban planning and placemaking.


Climate change allows no exceptions and requires us to live, think and engage differently.

Yellow design Foundation primary function is to initiate, develop and promote knowledge, expertise and sustainable solutions in mobility, urban planning and place-making. Our combined fields of research and knowledge, singular backgrounds, participative and transversal approach endorsed by exact, applied and human sciences, as well as linguistics and design allow us to come up with and develop uncomplicated solutions to complex problems.

We consider stations, cities and public spaces are extraordinary ‘bee-hives’ of activity and interaction, we like walking in them, observing travellers, passers-by, and those providing multifaceted services. We inventorise, analyse and compare data, corroborate the data with interviews, images and video in developing our recommendations and eventually suggest priorities and offer capacity building.

Who is

The team is composed of the following members:

Anne Leemans

Anne graduated in applied linguistics in 1981. She has been Yellow design Foundation’s Secretary General since 2004.

She is dedicated to promoting transversal cooperation and make experts in mobility, urban planning safety & security, energy and environment integrate their findings in the interest of sustainability and to the benefit of users: passengers, pedestrians and cyclists, but also other stakeholders of quality public space.

Dr João Cruz

João graduated in Interior and Industrial Design from the University of Lisbon, Portugal in 1997. He received his Master’s Degree in Product, Materials and Product Management by the University of Aveiro, Portugal in 2005. His thesis was entitled, “Design against crime in the public transportation networks of Lisbon and Oporto areas”.

Obtained his PhD at the University of Aveiro on 2015 after a three year research on “The role of design on the physical comfort and psychological well being of passengers on long haul trains in Portugal”.

Nady Bilani

Nady works as a financial analyst and business advisor whether to address innovation, development, IP registration or transfer programmes. Nady is also an Accredited associate of the Institute for Independent Business. Within Yellow design Foundation focuses mainly on sustainable feasibility and capacity training.

Dr. Glenn H. Frommer

Glenn is amongst the pioneers of the sustainability and the environmental movement, having worked in the field for more than 30 years. His understanding and application of corporate risk management and corporate reporting have helped set the gold standard for sustainability strategy development and management. In the course of his career, Glenn held senior executive positions with the Mass Transit Railway Corporation, Vipac Engineers and Scientists and Dampa A/S. His extensive cross-sector and cross-industrial experience extends throughout the international arena, specifically in Europe and Asia-Pacific.

Glenn has worked with the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) since 2000, involved in drafting technical supporting documents to the GRI G3.1 and G4 guidelines.


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In 1960 the World counted two mega cities (with populations of over 10 million), New York and Tokyo; in 2011, the number had risen to twenty two. Today there are 47 megacities in the world. Most of them are located in Asia. The largest are the metropolitan areas of Tokyo, Shanghai, and Jakarta, each having over 30 million inhabitants. China alone has 15 megacities, India has six. The front-runner, as the fastest urbanising continent, is Africa.

Cities, energy & waste


Cities can be looked at from many angles, in what follows I’d like to invite you to look at cities as a ‘multi- core dynamic network’. Standing alone, the cores are fairly meaningless, risking isolation, insecurity, with pockets of impoverishment. Within a fluid network they can benefit from the trade between each other’s products, services, charms and entertainment. In so doing they become interdependent and thus more resilient.

Mobility, density and urban green space


Previously, in Europe, men were the main producers of goods and services in the city. They would go out to conduct business meetings with other men. Thus they would influence and decide the design of public space and public buildings, deliver speeches, appoint confidants, and prepare laws with their inner circles, holding power in Parliament, and so on. But not women. They were not welcome in Houses of Parliament, universities…

Cities, from spheres of power to providers of competence


Cities are about people and people have dreams, aspirations, desires and needs. People make cities come alive: in streets, squares, piazzas, parks, and open spaces. Debates on urban development between architects and urban planners usually deal with houses and planning, possibly plotting. Debates on mobility and public transport usually deal with frequency, seamless transit, real-time information, transit hubs and/or customised tracks. However, architecture, urban planning and mobility share the same crucial needs for efficient land-use and urban integration.

Walkable cities, public space networks and river systems


The accessibility of public transport is the pre-requisite for sustainable urban development, a sustainable environment and, last but not least, a partial litmus-test for true democ- racies.

YdesignFoundation aims to contribute to a better quality of life for citizens, communities and organizations by good design in its many forms, shades and shapes, be it graphic, 3D and/or interactive.

By means of this research program on the link between the perception of security and design, YdesignFoundation’s objective is to contribute to the design of more positive context and surroundings, of improved…



Feelings of insecurity in public waiting or transfer areas are common despite adequate technical levels of security.

We found considerable knowledge and technical know how available in safe, secure environments but little if anything was being documented on the perception of security and the emotional reactions to sensory stimulation through the use of form, function, sound, smell or colour. The research team of YellowdesignFoundation developed a methodology to ellicitate and analyse links between social interaction and space for different user pro les…




Yellow design’s “Low carbon stations for low carbon cities” provides a comprehensive perspective and instructions that are of universal applicability. We believe this report and its recommendations can benefit many people. Its design and the guidelines it contains are simple and instructive. Its illustrations facilitate comprehension. Thank you all for the excellent work.

— Alice Dahlstrand & Anna Hansson
Swedish Transport Administration

Low Carbon Stations



SPIN-UP is a methodology that assesses and improves the quality of public space and public transport space. In early 2004 we started defining the research project that would endeavour to explore the mechanism and boundaries of perceived security as well as the link between perceived security and design in transit zones of intermodal stations of urban public transport. This ultimately resulted in the conception and development of the SPIN-UP…



Changement climatique oblige.

Mobilités Créatives


Last September 29th, the 1st International Creative Mobilities Forum was launched in Grenoble, France.

1st International Creative Mobilities Forum


We are pleased to present the trailer to our “Matale: an awaking city” production.
The full 30 minute video was released in April 2014.

This custom-made video shot on location during early 2014 concerns the city of Matale, in Sri Lanka, due to undergo extensive urban renewal. We hear the hopes and dreams, hard reality and ambitious town planning projects as we speak with government ministers and the Mayor, as well as small business owners, artists, and school children. Seeking the widest possible views, we travel to different institutions, shops, tea plantations, current street projects, fairs, festivals and more in order to reveal the strengths as well as the weaknesses of Matale as it stands on the brink of extensive urban redevelopment.

This video supplies an extensive, in-depth perspective to help any viewer realise that Matale, much like other cities of its size and aspirations, has a huge potential … all it takes is understanding and putting together those key elements that could make it shine.

Matale: an awaking city (trailer)



On behalf of UIC we developed a benchmark of major interchanges in Asia (Delhi, Mumbai, Seoul, Tokyo), compared results and best practices.

Document available upon request

Benchmark UIC



On behalf of UIC (International Union of Railways) we developed a toolbox for the design of major interchanges in Europe. The field research was carried out in Milano Centrale, Madrid Atocha, Paris Montparnasse and Berlin Haupthbahnhof.

Document available upon request

Toolbox UIC

Yellow design Foundation provides design solutions, quality and performance assessments, project definitions and recommendations for stations, station environments and urban public space

We offer

Yellow design Foundation provides design solutions, quality and performance assessments, project definitions and recommendations for stations, station environments and urban public space.

We act as an advisor and consultant to a variety of national and international organisations in mobility, urban planning and public health related projects that require sharp, smart solutions. These are based on data collected by means of tested and approved questionnaires in compliance with GDPR, as well international design, security and environmental standards and regulations.

Around the World

Safety and perceived security
Stockholm, Oslo, Helsingborg, Antwerp, Brussels, Paris, Oporto, Istanbul

Toolkit for the design of major interchanges
Paris, Madrid, Milan, Berlin

Benchmark of major interchanges in Asia
Delhi, Mumbai, Seoul, Shanghai, Beijing, Tokyo

Project definitions prior to renovation of station
Brussels: Roodebeek, Jacques Brel, Bourse, Anneessens, Bockstael, Stuyvenberg, Simonis

Low carbon stations for low carbon cities
Matale, Stockholm, Gothenburg, Malmö, Da’nang (upcoming)

SPIN UP, the methodology

SPIN UP is an acronym for Security Perception in Intermodal stations for Urban Public transport.A methodology that looks at security energy and an environment from a user’s perspective and linking any design upgrade of a transit hub to its improved perceived security while minimizing its energy usage and environmental impacts.

SPIN UP defines a station and its environments as a heterotopia, i.e. a place accessible to all but still governed by explicit and implicit rules. The explicit rules, for example, include buying a ticket in order to travel, not smoking within the station’s premises, not exhibiting offensive behaviour. The implicit ones are the rules we observe by culture and/or education, for example, queuing culture, speaking loudly or types of offensive behaviour, etc.

The station will usually be more or less hierarchically complex, similar to cities, but in this case will depend on the number of modes that converge at the station. In all cases, however, stations must offer a secure environment, reliable information and a clean infrastructure.


A Public Transport operator as a mobility and community services provider : The operator transports passengers from A to B, while offering free information and services as well as retail and entertainment possibilities.

SPIN UP distinguishes between USE, RUSE and ABUSE.

SPIN APP, the application

A smart web app, The SPIN APP security, energy and environment performance indicator will be made available in the very near future as a mobile device and web application. It will be platform agnostic and able to adapt to both very basic station configurations as well as rather sophisticated ones as its use is both meant for stations located in Developed countries and Least Developed Countries.The collected data are treated in full compliance with GDPR regulation.

More to be released later.

Contact info


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We will only process your personal data according to the privacy policy that applies to Yellow Design Foundation. This means that the personal data that we have obtained above will only be processed for the aforementioned explicit and legitimate purposes. As a data subject, you have a number of rights that are related to the personal data provided, so that you always remain fully in control of your personal data.

Contact info

Address Rue de l’Association 39, 1000 Brussels
Phone +32 2 734 02 48