PlanPhilly

Public Space

    • Workers planting trees

Philadelphia gets grant for planting at least 400 extra street trees a year

Philadelphia could be a lot greener. Only 20 percent of the city’s ground is covered by trees, which is below the national average (27 percent) — a little lower than New…

    • A packed room at Pipeline Philly listens as Witty Gritty's/Urban Consulate's Michelle Freeman kicks off the discussion

Design professionals discuss how to make room for all races in Philly public spaces

Sitting in front of a crowd of over one hundred, Tya Winn asked a row of audience members to stand. “There are about 25 of you standing,” the president of Philadelphia’s…

    • South Philly Library, Photo by Phillytrax

Down this Street before: Can Rebuild stick to its promise of data-driven, apolitical decisions?

The comparisons are irresistible: Less than three years into office, a Philadelphia mayor pushing through a major legislative initiative that promises to boost equity in long-neglected neighborhoods via a project financed…

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ABOUT PUBLIC SPACE

Public space includes everything from the sidewalk in front of your house, the road on which you drive to work, and the playground in which your child plays on the weekend.  Each of these spaces was designed to achieve specific functions, and some succeed while others fail.  Just like any other part of a city, many different factors explain the success of certain public spaces, and a lot of it is context-specific.  For example, why does Rittenhouse Square always appear to be more lively than Washington Square, even though they are of a very similar size and layout?  Why is Reading Terminal always busting at the seams with people when the Kimmel Center plaza remains empty at times when a show is not playing?  Why are streetscape improvements such as widened sidewalks and street trees the key to unlocking the potential of some commercial corridors and not others?  These questions and more are part of public space planning.

UPCOMING EVENTS IN PUBLIC SPACE

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