The Important Difference Between a Public Space and a ‘Common’

15 Jul

Read the full story in Atlantic Cities.

My neighborhood has a “commons.” So does yours. The commons comprises those explicitly or, in some cases, implicitly shared resources in which the community as a whole has an interest. At a minimum, these include the community’s streets, sidewalks, and public facilities and I would add, among other things, important scenic vistas, architectural character, and environmental resources. The most famous city park in Massachusetts is called Boston Common for a reason.

These places of shared interest are critically important to the urban environment and must be nurtured, protected and, in many cases, improved. Indeed, I would argue that the commons is what gives a community its identity, and knits us together.

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Posted by on July 15, 2013 in Smart growth


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