Professors Montgomery and Leonard

Film Reflection Assignment 2

When I think about these movies and the lecture presentation, the first thing that comes to mind regarding a discussion of public space and its role in the cities is that people (the public) should always be taken in consideration when it comes to shared public spaces. In every single one of these films and lecture we were able to see the consequence of missed use space and the effects of putting monetary value and agendas of powerful people as a priority and forgetting the every day people that live in neighborhoods. In “My Brooklyn” developers did not take in account the history and culture of the people living and working in the neighborhood they had planned to build in. This created gentrification and displacement for African American and Caribbean communities. In case of “Citizen Jane” Robert Moises in his attempt to transform and better the city (to his opinion), he was sacrificing the livelihood of many communities. He created a worst-case scenario by removing tenements in place for projects that later on brought crime and more poverty to communities. In “Human Scale” we start to see a repetitive eco of what Robert Moises had attempted to do with the NYC in the 50s but now in other cities in the world, like cities in China. The repetitive buildings that wouldn’t bring a dynamic safe space, excluding people from one another, depriving them from interactions and creating isolation. In terms of the lecture presentation we see a remanence of how architecture can influence human behavior for the better, how it has been reclaimed by the communities and, as it was displayed, how it has negatively influenced communities in the past through segregation.
The notion that appeals the most to me is the idea of bringing communities together to have a say on new developments just like Jane Jacobs did in her time. New York City over the years has made many positive improvements to public space, from waterfront parks being created, bike lanes being implemented and squares becoming more exclusive to pedestrians and the public thanks to communities coming together and becoming part of the discussion of public space.

1 Comment

  1. Latia Vergara

    I agree that everything Robert Moses did with regards to developing housing projects did not make the city better it made it worse and more dangerous for the minorities. The isolation of minorities made them out of touch with the rest of society and there for not inhaling with other social classes which would give them more opportunities to get out of poverty. Ms Jacobs was thinking in regards to future generations were as Moses was not.

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