Borderline

Borderline is a research-creation project that investigates the role of sound in community formation, particularly in areas currently undergoing rapid social change. The project will combine archival research, urban data, and critical mapmaking to create a mobile sonic artwork that generates personal, ‘playable’ drawings in public space by ‘listening’ to everyday experience.

Borderline Beta (Download this version)



This notebook tool is used for notating the sound that you hear in the urban environment, and exporting your data to a variety of map platforms. The next version of the device will integrate sound classification algorithms based on the Urban Sound Dataset an open source taxonomy for urban sound.

Borderline Maps

Borderline Notebook Toronto Airbnb Single Dwellings
Toronto Airbnb Rentals with average WalkScore by neighbourhood, December 2017.
Airbnb data courtesy of Tom Slee’s Airbnb Data Collection.


Borderline Detroit: HOLC Residential Security Map (1940) 'Class D Areas’ with '% Negro' values from Area Descriptions
Detroit’s ‘Class D Areas’ with percentage of African Americans per area indicated in black. Shape files of Hearne Brothers Polyconic Projection Map of Greater Detroit (1940), courtesy of Robert K. Nelson, LaDale Winling, Richard Marciano, Nathan Connolly, et al., Mapping Inequality.


Borderline is made possible through an Insight Development Grant from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada. Research Assistants: Jeremy Pinto, Nehal Kanektar, and Jada Koushik.


Borderline | 2017 | Projects