What's the best use of the parking spaces on public streets in a driverless future? After announcing the four finalists for its Driverless Future contest last month, Blank Space has chosen a winner: "Public Square" by FXFOWLE & Sam Schwartz Engineering. The series of approximately 8" x 8" plots ingeniously makes use of the freed-up space in the public realm, suggesting a mixture of green space, play equipment sites, retail installations and seating.
As contest judge Michael Replogle, Deputy Commissioner for Policy at the DOT noted in an interview with Crain’s, “It's important for cities to future-proof their infrastructure and policies, rather than wait for these technologies to reshape the city in ways we may not desire. Public Square offered a versatile tool kit for the city to reuse space for a variety of public needs.”
The designers, meanwhile, are excited. "We are honored and thrilled to receive this award and we hope that this recognition will help us as we move forward with the design and testing of Public Square,” said Jack Robbins of FXFOWLE. “It has been an extremely collaborative and rewarding process for our team and we look forward to further collaborations with the City and others who can bring their creativity and expertise to our vision.”
The adaptability and flexibility of the design makes it ideal for creating responsive urban installations at an incremental level. As a neighborhood develops and grows, each of the parcels can be changed to suit those individual needs. Congratulations, all!
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