Eyes on the Street: If You Build It, They Will Sit

bus_bulb_benches1.jpgA Soho shopper takes a break on a new bench between the sidewalk and the bus bulb. Construction’s still underway on this block. Photo: Paco Abraham

A couple weeks ago, we showed how the bus bulbs on Lower Broadway were being integrated with the sidewalk next to them. For drainage reasons, a small gap and a large fence had separated the two pedestrian spaces, but DOT capped the gap with a small grate and replaced the fence with benches. That work’s now largely complete and Streetsblog reader Dave "Paco" Abraham sent along these pics of Soho pedestrians taking advantage of their new public space. There’s a lot more breathing room on a stretch of sidewalk that’s often packed and it looks like people appreciate it. 

bus_bulb_benches2.jpgAt this time of day, bench users didn’t seem to be waiting for the bus. Photo: Paco Abraham.

This’ll be our last post for the day, so see you on Tuesday and have a great Fourth of July.

  • J

    Great article and photos! I work in the area, and there are few parks and no benches anywhere, except in the median of Houston Street. This change is a welcome addition to the neighborhood.

  • brian

    it needs trees!

  • CityHallMaven

    These photos are deceptive. The benches may be used by some pedestrians, but once the street peddlers arrive they commandeer the benches.

    You should show photos of these benches on Broadway/Spring Street where they have been usurped by street peddlers who command them all day to sell their stuff. Here is a link: http://ny.curbed.com/archives/2010/07/02/sohos_new_bus_bulb_benches_selling_new_yorks_return.php

    What is DOT going to do to rectify this terrible idea?

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