Website Catalogs NYC's Forgotten Public Spaces

As part of an endeavor to improve access to New York's 525 Privately Owned Public Spaces (POPS), which gained notoriety during last year's Occupy Wall Street protests, a new website has been launched to help the public find and utilize them.
October 23, 2012, 11am PDT | Jonathan Nettler | @nettsj
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Branden Klayko provides a description of the new POPS web portal, a joint project of the Municipal Arts Society (MAS) and Advocates for Privately Owned Public Space (APOPS), which endeavors to catalog each of the hundreds of POPS built in New York City as a result of a 1961 zoning resolution that granted zoning concessions to property owners in return for providing public space.

The mission of the website, which was launched in beta mode last week, is "to engage and inform the public by making data, photos, and site plans of the parks available in an easy-to-use format," says Klayko. "On the website, users can browse detailed information on each POPS location, learning about its amenities, history, and hours of access." Furthermore, "The public can participate in the project by ranking and commenting on POPS, making recommendations and announcements, posting photos, and reporting problems with the public spaces."

Says APOPS founder Jerold Kayden: "We're inviting the public to be our eyes and ears as a means to make these spaces more of an asset for everyone in the city. And to make people in other cities realize they can do the same thing." 

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Published on Monday, October 22, 2012 in The Architect's Newspaper
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