Citizens have always made their marks on cities—graffiti has been an urban presence for millennia—but land use and city planning have long been the province of professionals and bureaucrats. As a result, many urban spaces today lack human scale and sensitivity. In recent years, however, there has been an increase in the unauthorized, creative alteration of public spaces for the common good. Enterprising citizens are repurposing abandoned phone booths, installing public furniture, painting their own bike lanes, and even reclaiming entire intersections. More targeted and purposeful than most graffiti, yet more personal and place-based than a political campaign, this is do-it-yourself urban design.
Photo used with permission.