December 17, 2013

Regional Gathering Places

Planners often talk about designing places in cities where people can see and be seen. Places for chance encounters with strangers where conversations. Sidewalks, small pocket parks, outdoor caf├ęs, public plazas and squares. A place like the Hollywood Bowl is a gathering space on a large scale. In the case of the Bowl, it takes advantage of pleasant climate, music, food, and wine. Folks picnic all over the grounds before concerts and carry the fun into the Bowl. Planners often talk about the small scale pedestrian stuff as a place for chance encounters and opportunities to people watch. These are what might be known as "unprogrammed," but a programmed space like this offers just as many opportunities for interaction and chance encounters with strangers and because you attending a live musical performance you are likely to meet someone who shares similar tastes and interest. Someone from West LA makes a friend from Arcadia, etc.