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Old 04-10-2014, 11:21 AM
 
Location: Paris
8,156 posts, read 6,960,937 times
Reputation: 3438

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Quote:
Originally Posted by nei View Post
While I don't mind that much the lack of greenery, a large paved/stone paved space looks like it could be rather sterile and blank without some decor whenever there's few people. Why don't they add a few decorations or trees?

These proposals to pedestrianize some Manhattan avenue suggest using a paved surface for maximum usable space:

Pave, pave, pave. The surface of the promenade is largely covered with functional brick and stone pavers, minimizing maintenance while maximizing the area for human use (which includes weekly farmers' markets).

Click on the link for and see some photos, which would very nice.

Old Urbanist: New Plans for Old Avenues in New York City
On the whole tree issue, I kinda agree with Katiana that a lot of European cities and, more importantly, suburbs and villages are too mineral. Though for that particular square in Arras, I wouldn't plant a single tree. I think that a treeless square works well in that case. Trees would block the view to the fine architecture. The climate is pretty cool even in summer and a large canopy would probably be seen as an annoyance by most people, contrary to places further south, where it would be a relief. Though I agree that a fountain, statue or a couple flower massifs wouldn't hurt. The bigger square looks worse. It's basically a large parking lot because it hosts a lot of temporary events, like Christmas markets, fun fairs or concerts. The town is small relative to the size of those squares, so pedestrian traffic is low and it feels a bit like a wasteland outside these events.

That Nîmes example above is similar to NYC's Dag Hammarskjold Plaza from the oldurbanist article: leafy by no greenery at ground level. Quite adapted to places with heavy pedestrian traffic and quite nice imo. This configuration is also pretty common (from a Paris suburb):
http://img811.imageshack.us/img811/9292/94ty.jpg

Instead of paving or putting a lawn, the soil is left bare. Such places are popular among pétanque players, as you can see on the pic. The ground is rarely muddy and, contrary to a lawn, every square foot is usable. There's a small gazebo in the middle:
https://maps.google.fr/maps?q=saint+...,28.07,,0,9.52

Other "squares" nearby:
https://maps.google.fr/maps?q=saint+...114.43,,0,7.68
https://maps.google.fr/maps?q=saint+...12,2.38,,0,7.6
https://maps.google.fr/maps?q=saint+...35.45,,0,13.88
https://maps.google.fr/maps?q=saint+...65.26,,0,-0.96
https://maps.google.fr/maps?q=saint+...216.23,,0,5.39
https://maps.google.fr/maps?q=saint+...107.76,,0,8.49


I also like the idea of giving public access to the green median in Park Avenue. One lane of traffic would be lost on each side though. Not sure how bad the traffic is there.
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Old 04-10-2014, 12:02 PM
 
Location: Portland, Oregon
46,050 posts, read 30,334,004 times
Reputation: 7845
Quote:
Originally Posted by ckhthankgod View Post
I don't know if this would fit, but it is somewhat of an area where people congregate: https://maps.google.com/maps?q=roche...310.48,,0,1.94
It looks like a neat little square in the middle of that little downtown. While it is a little to the south in the downtown, the Manhattan Square Park kind of looks like a combination of a square and a park. I wonder what kind of activity that place gets.
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Old 04-10-2014, 02:18 PM
 
59,571 posts, read 84,425,577 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by urbanlife78 View Post
It looks like a neat little square in the middle of that little downtown. While it is a little to the south in the downtown, the Manhattan Square Park kind of looks like a combination of a square and a park. I wonder what kind of activity that place gets.
Here you go: https://rocwiki.org/Martin_Luther_Ki...an+Square+Park

It appears to be a better example than the Liberty Pole example, eventhough that may still fit as well: https://rocwiki.org/Liberty_Pole

There's this one as well: https://rocwiki.org/Washington_Square_Park
https://rocwiki.org/Washington_Square_Neighborhood
https://maps.google.com/maps?q=Washi...253.63,,0,-0.9

Here are a couple more: https://maps.google.com/maps?q=squar...172.63,,0,8.31
Niagara Square - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

https://maps.google.com/maps?q=squar...,131.5,,0,7.07
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lafayette_Square_(Buffalo)

Last edited by ckhthankgod; 04-10-2014 at 02:32 PM..
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Old 04-11-2014, 09:41 PM
 
Location: Fort Worth, Texas
156 posts, read 198,303 times
Reputation: 183
Thumbs up One of the best squares in the U.S.

Sundance Square in Fort Worth, Texas:

https://www.google.com/search?q=sund...2F%3B988%3B445

The plaza was just completed last November. I was there the day it opened.
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Old 04-11-2014, 09:56 PM
 
Location: Portland, Oregon
46,050 posts, read 30,334,004 times
Reputation: 7845
Quote:
Originally Posted by PeopleAreStrange View Post
Sundance Square in Fort Worth, Texas:

https://www.google.com/search?q=sund...2F%3B988%3B445

The plaza was just completed last November. I was there the day it opened.
Wow, that is a fantastic town square, I had no idea they built something like that in Fort Worth.
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Old 04-23-2014, 01:40 PM
nei nei won $500 in our forum's Most Engaging Poster Contest - Thirteenth Edition (Jan-Feb 2015). 

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Location: NYC
46,051 posts, read 43,416,050 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nei View Post
England has village greens, too as I mentioned. Most London ones I found skimming through streetview appear to be at least partially green, usually more green than paved. Perhaps they were meant to be small parks, though it appears the grass is sometimes fenced off. Judging from some of their "squares", any small park in the shape of a square is called a square.
Those park-like squares I found in London are called "garden squares". They seem a bit different than many of the town squares, as many seem to be more like neighborhood parks. List has Leceister Square, which seems to be like any other European center city square, though it has a garden in it.

Garden square - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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