New York’s streets are getting new ownership. Lane by lane, curb cut by parking space, in steps so scattered and incremental that they hardly get noticed, people on foot are wresting control of the asphalt from those behind the wheel.and
the basic unit of urban life: the street. There, lifestyles intersect and city dwellers co-exist with people different from themselves. It’s where we learn toleration, where leisure shares space with urgency, commerce with activism, baby carriages with handcarts. When it is narrowed by garbage or overwhelmed by traffic, then the street reverts to its most primitive use: as a corridor. But a truly public place allows people to move at many different paces, or not to move at all.
The article talks about Robert Moses. Who was Robert Moses? He was an extremely powerful developer and politician for four decades in New York City. BikePortland has an interesting article and subsequent discussion about the Portland that was "designed" based on Moses' vision and strategy. More information can be found at PortlandOnline.
"Cities are for traffic"