Finding POPS

Michael Keller and Yolanne Almanzar, again for the New York World:

WNYC’s Brian Leher Show and The New York World are collaborating on a project to map and report on New York City’s Privately-Owned Public Spaces, aka POPS. We want to figure out how public these public spaces really are. Through zoning incentives, New York’s city planners have encouraged private builders to include public spaces in their developments. Many are in active public use, but others are hard to find, under heavy surveillance, or essentially inaccessible.

Yes, that’s right: A crowdsourced web map of privately owned public spaces. Shouldn’t all places with POPS have a web map so people can find them? And shouldn’t private developers fund the creation and maintenance of those web apps? The financial benefit developers receive for providing a modicum of public space is enormous.

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