New York City has closed off five blocks of  Times Square to vehicles.  You can check it out for yourself on this webcam:

NYT -Times Square

It may be a little hard to make out, but there are lawn chairs in the upper left corner, in what were once four lanes of traffic.

You can read the backstory here.  News story on the closure with great pics here.

Times Square pic

The Times architecture critic weighs in with a first impression here.

On the other coast, San Francisco is following New York’s lead in reclaiming asphalt for people, as described on Cooltown Studios site.  (Thanks to Scot Bathgate.)


  1. if NYC and SF can accomplish this, why can’t we consider this in Vancouver? we don’t have any recognizable public square, can we temporarily create one for ourselves?

    how about declaring five blocks around Vancouver Art Gallery/along robson street a pedestrian only area, atleast for the summer season. are there any serious draw backs on doing this??

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