Benches and Austerity

How long until cities cannot afford to keep, let alone add, park benches? Yet they are an essential quality of life element, adding to the humanity of a community. I have never heard one mayor, one elected representative, use park benches as a quality of life indicator for their city.   Instead we get jobs!  New houses! Growth!

Nah, park benches are much more important in the end.  They are symbols of how a city is supposed to be used:  on foot, in pleasant company or alone.  They say, “sit here awhile.  Take your time. Enjoy city life.”  No amount of exclaiming about growth – or even of “progressive design” – will ever be as important as sending that message.

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