What Defines a 'Place'?

It's been more than 50 years since Boston's old West End was demolished, so why does the neighborhood still have its own newspaper, museum, and weekly gatherings?
January 13, 2012, 10am PST | Jonathan Nettler | @nettsj
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Robert Campbell writes about this truly unique "place", and the myriad lessons it can provide for architects and city planners.

"We forget that to experience a building or a neighborhood richly, we need to hear it, smell it, taste it (even the air has a taste, a humidity, a temperature), touch it (as we move our hands over the rough surfaces of old buildings), and experience it spatially as we move through it. The old West End was a feast for all the senses."

"If the old West End was anything, it was such a memory palace. The tightly packed streets and buildings were rich with incident and detail. There were lots of hooks on which to hang your memories. The neighborhood's intricacy supplied a zillion clues. You didn't have to consciously memorize, of course. You couldn't help remembering."

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Published on Sunday, January 8, 2012 in The Boston Globe
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