Utne Blogs > Mind and Body

The World's Great Public Spaces

by Miranda Trimmier 


Tags: Spirituality, public space, community, neighborhoods, landmarks, Project for Public Spaces, World Hum,

train stationProject for Public Spaces (PPS), a nonprofit that supports the development of community-friendly places, has compiled a list of 60 of their favorite public gathering spots around the world. The intro to the list waxes a bit epically, hinting at “the places we remember most vividly, the places where serendipitous things happen, the places we tell stories about.”

But the romantic tone is balanced with concrete analysis on what makes the choices compelling. PPS includes blurbs on the accessibility, comfort, activities, and sociability of each place, as well as background and historical information. While the list includes obvious picks like New Orleans’ French Quarter, it also highlights humbler, more local spots: An organic children’s garden in Toronto gets a mention for its diversity of programming, and a bus hub in Corpus Christi, TX is recognized for its festive, convivial atmosphere. All in all, it offers some insight into the qualities that make a space people-friendly, and will probably get you thinking about your own favorite public places.

Image by Doublep1, licensed under Creative Commons.

(Thanks, World Hum.)