The Audacity of Public Space

Posted by Kyla Fullenwider

3794201250_deccc4d447_bWhen New York's new transportation czar decided to replace car lanes with lawn furniture she was crazy or brilliant, depending on who you asked. Who would actually sit down in the middle of the street? Would it make traffic better or worse?Almost a year after the plan was announced most of these questions have been answered. Yes, people sit down in the middle of the street (if you give them chairs). All different kinds. And in some cases the traffic is better, in other cases worse.Not all that exciting? Well, actually it is. When New York experiments other cities listen. This experiment took place in one of the most public parts of the city- Times Square. That's no small matter. The world will see its failures and its successes, possibly from a jumbo-tron. And while the very early data is not showing a runaway success, the biggest success might be that they tried in the first place.Photo courtesy of Matthew RadwanThis post originally appeared on, as part of GOOD's collaboration with the Pepsi Refresh Project, a catalyst for world-changing ideas. Find out more about the Refresh campaign, or to submit your own idea today.