New York, Open City: Contesting the Commons by Matt Frassica
What kinds of functions do public places serve? In what ways does the design of public spaces determine the kinds of things that go on inside them? How do planners (architects, landscape designers, urban planners, city officials) create spaces that promote certain social functions over others, and privilege certain users over others? What are the consequences, intended and unintended, of these design decisions? What happens when public spaces become contested spaces - when competing claims of tradition, memory, and financial interest get hashed out through design?
See also my clips and NYOC blog for current work.