Nfld. & Labrador

The Battery audio tour through an iPhone app

A new iPhone app called Inside Outside Battery allows users to take an audio tour of the historic neighbourhood in St. John's as they walk the streets and trails.

A new iPhone app called Inside Outside Battery allows users to take an audio tour of the historic neighbourhood of St. John's as they walk the streets and trails.

The project is the latest from documentary-maker Chris Brookes, who says he was inspired to offer people more than just what they were seeing as they walked through areas like the North Head Trail.

"I was interested in the idea of information that you don't find out unless you live in a place or unless you know people in the place," Brookes said.

Chris Brookes says he wanted to provide hikers and visitors with some insight into the Battery neighbourhood that used to only be available to people who lived there. (CBC)

"You look around and what you see is rocks, water, and trees and houses, but I mean there's a whole layer of human experience over all of that."

Brookes said he wants the audio tour to provide hikers and visitors with a unique experience, based entirely on which route they decide to walk.

"This is a way of infiltrating their ears. This is an app about The Battery with sounds and voices about here, from here, that they can listen to when they're walking through," he said.

"It's designed for people to wander around and do what they want to do. Some people will like some stories, some will stop and listen, some won't. Some will take a shortcut and they'll hear something different, some won't and they will never hear what's up there."

According to Brookes, the project is an homage to his home. He has lived in the Outer Battery for almost 25 years.

"I love the Outer Battery … it's a pretty special place, it's really special," he said.

"It's not just special because of what you see, which is really special, but because of the people who live here, you know? I'm in love with the place and so this is kind of a love letter to The Battery."

The app is currently only available on an iPhone, but Brookes said he is working on an Android-friendly version that should be out by the spring of 2014.


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