Week 11 Main Post: Reimagining Public and Private Space

What is public space? What is private space?

Although the lines can be a little blurry, in my opinion, private space is owned by a company or organization although it could also be open to the public. Public space is for the people, for the masses. That means that public sites like parks should be easily accessible by the public and benefit them too. But that doesn’t mean humans can do as they please. There’s a fine line between public space and private space. And I think people in general are better at respecting private space than they are with public places.

Why is it important?

Life isn’t just about getting from one place to another. True, living in the city means people are constantly on the go. And most individuals travel through public spaces without realizing it. It’s important to take the time to appreciate what’s around us because we spend a great deal of time in motion, hurrying to our next class or rushing to catch a bus. But we still spend countless hours in one place. And does our environment contribute to our quality of life? You bet it does.

What about interior spaces?

I argue most of us spend a large portion of our day inside. Inside a classroom, inside an office, inside a building of some sort. So although outdoor public spaces such as beaches are great, there needs to be a greater emphasis on improving indoor spaces. Besides, have you experienced the weather in Toronto?

How can we make the city better?

Whether it’s public or private, I think improvement starts with us. The people who use the space. Oftentimes we encounter rude people that ruin our experience at the library, at the beach, etc. On the TTC, for example, I don’t know why some individuals think it’s okay to have their feet on another seat. It’s equally frustrating when someone takes up multiple seats during rush hour even while other riders are looking to sit down. Regardless of whether it’s rush hour or not, I still think a little courtesy for others goes a long way.

Where do we go from here?

I can’t predict the future, but I look forward to seeing what Toronto does next for public and private spaces. I think the city and the people in it will continue to make me proud.

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Week 9 Main Post: Daniels Spectrum and Artscape

Having never been to Regent Park, I didn’t know what to expect. But safe to say the community surprised me in many ways.

We stopped at Daniels Spectrum and found out about many different organizations.

On their official website, they describe the place as a

cultural hub in Regent Park open to everyone.

They also go on to say that

it is home to many outstanding arts-based and community-focused organizations, and contains several event, performance and exhibition spaces that host tens of thousands of visitors and hundreds of arts and cultural events each year.

Daniel Spectrum

I found that I was very drawn to Artscape and what they were doing not just for people living in Regent Park but other individuals or groups from other communities.

Artscape is a not-for-profit urban development organization that makes space for creativity and transforms communities.

Our work involves clustering creative people together in real estate projects that serve the needs of the arts and cultural community and advance multiple public policy objectives, private development interests, community and neighbourhood aspirations and philanthropic missions.

Their work got me thinking about the lack of spacing that’s often an issue when it comes to housing, schooling, as well as other important areas in bringing people together.

I think it’s very important for children and adults to have a place where they can sing, dance, act, etc. Unfortunately, some individuals aren’t able to afford to rent a recording booth or theatre for the creative endeavours they hope to pursue. And sometimes the community as a whole can’t set aside a decent sized space with the right resources for the arts.

Often times academics come first. Then athletics. The arts are sometimes abandoned and neglected.

However, Artscape wants to offer a safe space for artistic, creative expression.

I admire that the group aims to foster the arts by giving incredible people the right place come together.

Every day, Artscape spaces come alive with the ideas and passion of the 116 organizations and 2,300+ people who work and/or live within our portfolio of buildings. Thirty-two public venues pulse with the energy of the 247,000+ people who take part in exhibitions and performances annually and the thousands more who participate in our programs, tenant-driven activities and city-wide events.

Artscape

And they are just as incredible.