upstairs lounge

queer place-making in New Orleans; part 1

“The right to the city is far more than the individual liberty to access urban resources: it is a right to change ourselves by changing the city.”  David Harvey, The Right to the City

The recent debate surrounding the Confederate monuments in New Orleans has me thinking about public spaces, how they speak about our values, and the concept of placemaking.  Placemaking is something we talk a lot about as wide-eyed urban planning students in grad school, but less so during the grind of actual practice.

According to the Project for Public Spaces, placemaking is an active approach to “strengthening the connection between people and the places they share,” and “a collaborative process by which we can shape our public realm.”  The folks at MIT are more succinct in their description, suggesting simply that placemaking empowers local communities to create a sense of “belonging” through place.  (quotes theirs) (more…)