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Public Space

There Was a 'High Line' Before the Famous Elevated Park in NYC

F. Kaid Benfield | Posted 07.14.2014 | Green
F. Kaid Benfield

New York's City's hugely successful and justly celebrated High Line wasn't the first elevated urban railroad bed to be converted into a much-loved linear park.

Design Out of Reach: The Best Way to Shoo Homeless People Away

Joel John Roberts | Posted 08.22.2014 | Impact
Joel John Roberts

When I was in architecture school, the design projects to which we were assigned typically related to creating spaces or products that were to benef...

Can Biking and Walking Save Lives in Cities in the Global South?

Josephine d'Allant | Posted 08.13.2014 | Impact
Josephine d'Allant

Sidewalks, bike lanes, pedestrian crossings, parks, and green areas are all pieces of a complex puzzle to help citizens navigate their city safely and sustainably.

Undermining 'Underpants Man'

Roz Warren | Posted 06.02.2014 | Fifty
Roz Warren

If a Wellesley college student, walking across campus, spots a man her father's age wearing nothing but underpants, stumbling along, eyes closed and arms outstretched, she can call the police on her call and they'll be there in two minutes to remove him.

Learning Los Angeles: Aaron Paley Founder of CicLAvia, "I'm So Excited About Living Here!"

Cathy Weiss | Posted 05.28.2014 | Los Angeles
Cathy Weiss

Aaron Paley of CicLAvia is a San Fernando Valley kid who knew there was more to LA than his suburban neighborhood. He grew up organizing family festi...

2013 a Year for Green Accomplishments: Looking Ahead as New Mayors Take the Helm

Adrian Benepe | Posted 01.16.2014 | Green
Adrian Benepe

If 2013 was the "year of the bike share," will 2014 see continued growth in both the number of bikes and riders? Or will the novelty wear off and costs go up?

How the Urban Poor Are Reclaiming Public Space

Josephine d'Allant | Posted 01.23.2014 | Impact
Josephine d'Allant

Whether with the help of a superhero, a photo festival, better urban planning and communication, or through a basketball tournament, these initiatives show how the urban poor in the Global South can reclaim the public space that belongs to them.

Green Infrastructure: Cities Across the Nation Become More Resilient (Part III)

Adrian Benepe | Posted 12.03.2013 | Green
Adrian Benepe

A number of American cities are looking at innovative and creative ways to develop new park land for their residents in projects which can also help protect their local streams and rivers from the type of dirty water and even raw sewage overflow caused by heavy rainfalls.

Green Infrastructure: The Design Element (Part II)

Adrian Benepe | Posted 11.25.2013 | Green
Adrian Benepe

These hyper-performing landscapes are tiny by park standards, but they bring beauty to formerly barren corners, serve as mini habitats for insects and birds, and most of all, soak up storm water.

Markets Bring Greens to Consumers, Greenbelts to Cities, Green to Farmers

Adrian Benepe | Posted 10.29.2013 | Green
Adrian Benepe

In cities across the country, the end of summer brings throngs to the revived urban famers markets that have become part of the quality of life of many neighborhoods.

Pushing Privatized "Partnership" Agenda at New York City's Public Parks -- Part 3

Cathryn Swan | Posted 10.19.2013 | New York
Cathryn Swan

People are against parks being privatized, the commercialization and sanitizing of our parks, the overarching corporate influence on these public spaces, the public increasingly being denied access to their commons, the resulting lack of transparency and accountability, and so much more.

The Ecology of Public Space: From Uhuru to Taksim

Mia MacDonald | Posted 09.07.2013 | World
Mia MacDonald

As public space has become increasingly privatized and commercialized, such green space reminds people that they're citizens and rights-bearers, and not merely consumers and logo-wearers.

How POPS Changed My Life

Nancy Slotnick | Posted 07.21.2013 | New York
Nancy Slotnick

I discovered that Matchmaker Café and public space had a lot in common. My philosophy in my dating business is that people have to connect in the real world, out in the public domain.

Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs

Rob Hiaasen | Posted 06.26.2013 | Fifty
Rob Hiaasen

Here's the self-inflicted curse of writing: Everywhere writers look or land, there is better writing. I'll prove it.

Privatization of the Commons in Mayor Bloomberg's New York -- Part II: Who Has Control?

Cathryn Swan | Posted 06.26.2013 | New York
Cathryn Swan

These three New York City parks -- Bryant Park, Madison Square Park, and Union Square Park - all have slightly different structures running them. What they have in common is their corporate makeup.

Privatization of the Commons in Mayor Bloomberg's New York - Part I

Cathryn Swan | Posted 06.15.2013 | New York
Cathryn Swan

Mayor Michael Bloomberg did not invent the concept of the "public-private partnership." But he has aggressively pushed "private money" within the New York City Parks system, particularly under former Parks Commissioner Adrian Benepe, who left last year.

Fall and Rise of Great Public Places

Jay Walljasper | Posted 10.10.2012 | Green
Jay Walljasper

The spots we share together--parks, streets, sidewalks, squares, trails, markets, waterfronts, beaches, museums, community gardens, public buildings and more--are the primary sites for human exchange, upon which our communities, economy, democracy and society depend.

Times Square Desert-Scape

Gabrielle Selz | Posted 06.18.2012 | Arts
Gabrielle Selz

The place, ablaze with lights and crowds, just begs to be turned into an art arena. It's the exact opposite of a serene gallery or museum space. And it absolutely requires a display that reveals this dilemma. How to grab and hold a viewer's attention amid all that hustle?

Debate: Should You Be Able To Do As You Please In The Skies?

Katherine Patke | Posted 06.01.2012 | Travel

Last week the story of a woman who was removed from an American Airlines flight by pilots because of her offensive clothing became big news. American ...

Scenes From an Airport Restaurant

Randall Amster | Posted 07.07.2012 | Healthy Living
Randall Amster

The convivial ethics of the picnic table, park bench, bus stop kiosk, and similar exemplars don't exist very much inside the spaces of consumption and conveyance that increasingly dominate our daily lives.

Turning Off the Lights: Democracy in the Dark

Benjamin R. Barber | Posted 03.11.2012 | Politics
Benjamin R. Barber

There is no more dismal metaphor for America's abandonment of the public sphere than the decision by Highland Park, Michigan to rip up a swath of its street lights in the name of public parsimony.

People Places: What If We Used Parking Spaces for Something Else?

Jennifer Gennari | Posted 11.14.2011 | San Francisco
Jennifer Gennari

Instead of endless pavement for cars, our limited land could be used for something else. Imagine! Public art, benches and trees, café tables. Places people want to go.

Will Open-Air Reading Room Transform Public Space?

Posted 11.09.2011 | Books

In July this year, a curious project appeared on the website Kickstarter, asking for donations. The Uni Project was described as "a portable, open-air...

Lessons From Brooklyn for the LADOT

Joel Epstein | Posted 10.25.2011 | New York
Joel Epstein

New York under Bloomberg and his DOT is remaking itself into a city known for its parks, open space and complete streets philosophy that recognizes the role the roads play for drivers, buses, pedestrians and bikers.

WATCH: Surreal Sculpture On A Farm

VernissageTV | Posted 10.14.2011 | Arts
VernissageTV

The Garden of Forking Paths is the title of an outdoor sculpture project, which the Migros Museum für Gegenwartskunst is staging on the Blum family e...