PlanPhilly

Public Space

    • Philadelphia Police Commissioner Richard Ross (Kimberly Paynter/WHYY)

Police Commissioner rejects key Starbucks arrest report recommendation

The Philadelphia Police Department agrees that anti-racist training could help officers de-escalate conflicts without arrests but can’t commit to providing that training until the department identifies “appropriate funding,” said Commissioner Richard…

    • homeless memorial paine plaza

With Dilworth and Love Park remade for leisure, Paine Plaza redo is a chance to save a space for protest

Thomas Paine Plaza, the public space outside the Municipal Services Building, is so unremarkable that you’d be forgiven for not knowing its name. But you might recognize it by the bronze…

    • A woman runs past a pile of litter next to a Big Belly trash can on South Broad Street.

With no cash for trash, city mulls partnerships with private groups

Fewer public trash cans result in more litter on streets and in parks. That was the conclusion of a nine-month study done by city officials working with researchers from the University…

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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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