Category Archives: Safety

I got sunburned at the Corktown Common but I don’t care

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It almost seems too good to be true. You can’t quite believe this is Toronto. Toronto doesn’t look this…crafted. Everyone has this look on their face like a child that’s been given a new toy, but isn’t quite sure yet whether they are allowed to keep it. People go around just touching things—the spongy ground of a new playground, the smooth concrete of a picnic table, the streak-free bowl of a water fountain. Continue reading

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Full Circle in Manhattan

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By Minna Ninova

In 1950, the City of New York named a traffic circle at the northwest corner of Central Park, on the edge of Harlem, after the African-American writer and abolitionist Frederick Douglass. In 2006, I moved into an apartment nearby and took to calling the traffic circle The Danger Place on account of the chaotic traffic situation that cut the circle off from any form of intelligent public use. Continue reading

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Lighter Quicker Cheaper – Public Plazas

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Unused areas such as the Pearl Street Triangle, in Brooklyn’s
waterfront community of DUMBO, are being transformed from
the bottom-up with lighter, quicker, cheaper approaches to public
space design. These small changes are making a big impact.

Read more about the importance of public plazas here…

Photo by NYC DOT from Flickr (CC)

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Defending Pedestrian Rights

There is a defender of pedestrian rights in the streets of Mexico City, Peatónito the masked Lucha Libre. Pedestrian safety is a major issue in Mexico city with one pedestrian death per day on average and countless injuries. Peatónito and his comrades take to the streets and crosswalks to physically block cars that are infringing on pedestrian space, paint crosswalks and clear sidewalks of obstructions.

Check out the full article here…

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More Than Just a Pretty Fence

Installing the public art.

By Anjuli Solanki

Toronto’s Thorncliffe Park is a densely-populated neighbourhood of apartment towers arranged in a tight horseshoe shape that’s capped by a shopping mall. Inside the horseshoe, sheltered by the towers, is a small but intensely used park connected to the mall by a narrow pathway about 175 metres long. The pathway is almost always full of people laden with shopping but it is lined by unfriendly chain-link fencing, poorly paved, and lit ineffectively. Continue reading

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Market 707: Shipping Containers for Public Spaces

By Anjuli Solanki

Scadding Court Community Centre Market Place, also known as Market 707 is located on Dundas Street West and Bathurst. Scadding Court Community Centre (SCCC) has a rooted history of creating dynamic and relevant community programming and the Container Market 707 is a permanent and physical example of their social inclusion and community economic development initiatives. Recognizing that the inactive and bleak looking strip that encases the SCCC was a safety concern as well as an area lacking  certain amenities, they took action to rectify this deficiency through the implementation of a container market. Not only has the 707 Market improved the safety through passive ‘policing’ by the retailers and patrons; it has also provided unique and affordable economic opportunities. Continue reading

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