Occupy Wall Street is a revelatory expression of discontent through non-violent, grassroots means.
Occupy Wall Street has been in effect for over a month now, spurring replication in other cities and growing support here in New York City.
Occupy Wall Street is bringing a whole new demographic to Lower Manhattan—a neighbourhood where the dress code from 9 to 5 is corporate formal and improvisation is scarce.
Occupy Wall Street’s existence is made possible by the rare presence of public open space in the Financial District, a part of Manhattan whose origins pre-date New York City Zoning laws.
Occupy Wall Street is also the very successful domesticization of a public space.
By Jake Tobin Garrett
Walking down a pretty barren stretch of downtown Brooklyn, I noticed something strange in the windows of the shops lining Willoughby Street. Although the stores seemed to be closed, the windows displayed eye-catching and colourful displays. Closer inspection revealed that these 12 vacant storefronts were part of a project called Willoughby Windows run by non-profit community development organization MetrotechBID in partnership with Ad Hoc Art, which worked to transform what normally would be a boring, papered-over stretch of empty retail into displays of public art. Continue reading
I have always loved shutting down the streets in Toronto’s Kensington Market to cars for the final Sunday of every month from May through October. The streets flood with people and performers. It is obvious this is something desperately wanted by many, and some local businesses boom when it happens.
For years I, and many others, have been frustrated that we cannot shut these streets and others around the city to cars on a more regular, if not, permanent basis. I have written about this frustration in the past. It had never occurred to me that there could be a serious downside to creating a permanent no-car zone in a place like Kensington.