Public and common spaces in America

Essay about public and common spaces

What is meant by public space? In layman’s terms, public space is created to be used by the public.Definitions can vary as many choose to differentiate between ownership, control, and access. Some choose to define it based on the ownership; therefore, space may be developed by a public or private investors or entities, however, as long as the access to the location is allowed for public use, it may be called public space. These areas have been created for the use of the human population of the region to interact with and observe people. 

What is a common space?

Common space is defined as the one where the community as a whole has an interest, and the best example of it are public facilities. These places have a shared interest from everyone in the city and are critical to urban development. 

Public and common spaces have to be available to the people of all races, religions, age groups, income levels and so on, making it accessible to everyone, without any restriction in the area or location. However, most of the privately owned public spaces may have restrictions and that is discussed further on. 

Privately owned public space (POPS) OR privately owned public open spaces (POPOS)

Privately owned public spaces are that are owned privately, however, they are required by the local zoning ordinance to be open to the public, or by the use of other laws. These spaces are generally areas, where the private real estate dealer has had struck a deal with the local city authorities granting the developers valuable concessions. In turn, the developed will provide the cityprivately owned public spaces in or near their buildings

There is an issue that must be addressed, like shopping malls, private clubs, gated communities are all examples of contemporary public space and these have restrictions on usage for certain socio-economic and exclusive groups. A decrease in the publicness of common areas has been noticed based on a few other aspects such as crime, traffic, anti-social behaviors are some of the reasons for it. 

The roads that we walk on, or using the park, these are the best examples of public spaces that are also common spaces. Public spaces are vital for communities, cities, towns, and villages, and placing regulations as to which people can access the facilities is counterproductive to the benefit and growth of the society.