We will be concerned here mainly with parks in a distinctly urban setting, where parts of the city intrude. Some of the spaces we will examine are not actually parks but boulevards, but the distinction is not too important for our purposes.
It seems really important to provide city dwellers with tranquil, beautiful, green surroundings within easy reach of home. (Christopher Alexander thinks they need to be within three blocks; I think they might be a bit further away if the streets are carfree and pleasant.)
We will take up only briefly the question of large parks that give a feeling of remoteness. The provision of large open areas near a city is highly desirable from many standpoints, and this was one of the important design criteria in the development of the Reference Design for carfree cities. In fact, nothing really needs to be done to these expansive open areas - for the most part, their existing uses can be retained, perhaps with the conversion of some of the land adjoining the districts into parks.
We are concerned here with small, integral parks that have important relationships with the surrounding urban area.
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