Walking from Bowling Green to Bryant Park has taught me the differences between parks, plazas, and squares. Parks are surrounded with trees and grass, with individual walkways, whereas plazas have more open space to walk. Plaza spaces are more uniform with no border to close off the area. A square has both park and plaza features. Each space has a different texture and feeling. Materials used in each space represented the type of public space it was. The spaces could also be determined by the amount of walkway given to pedestrians. I also observed that we can tell the difference between a park, plaza and square by the type of activity being done in the area.
I think the following principles will help to guide a master plan:
- Thinking about the way roadways and sidewalks are placed in the plan.
- How close is transportation?
- Take into consideration residential areas (Private) vs. commercial areas (Public)
- Where are the parks and plazas
- How big are the blocks and how are they arranged in the plan?
I think Urban Design is the development of a building and its surroundings. It focuses on the landscape of the area and how the building fits within the surrounding. It may also focus on how we can save space and materials in the area.