APA Designates Plaza Real
As One of 10 Top 10 Great
Public Spaces In America On
November 18, 2010
Dedication ceremony and permanent plaque unveiling commemorating the designation of Plaza Real in the center of Mizner Park in Downtown Boca as One Of Ten Great Public Places In America 2010 by the American Planning Association (APA). Plaza Real is featured on this year’s top 10 list with such world renowned prestigious public spaces as Bryant Park in New York City and Rittenhouse Square in Philadelphia. Attendees learned why Plaza Real was designated.
What is the Great Places in America program?
• The American Planning Association’s (APA) flagship program that recognizes excellence in planning and outcomes in communities across America. The program is designed to recognize places of exceptional character, quality and planning.
• Celebrates outstanding U.S. neighborhoods, streets and public spaces and their communities. They have a strong sense of place, oftentimes historic architecture, community involvement, a common vision for tomorrow, support of elected leaders, and a legacy of planning.
• Highlights the successes of communities working to create places of great value – planning to solve real world problems at the local level – such as sprawl, reducing carbon emissions, conserving energy, economic revitalization, and close access to schools, recreational facilities, jobs, and commercial, retail and service businesses.
What makes a place great?
• They balance the needs of different users. For example, streets that accommodate motor vehicles as well as public transportation users, pedestrians, bicyclists, and service vehicles, or neighborhoods that meet all of the needs of residents so they do not have commute long distances to schools, jobs, shopping, recreation and other day-to-day needs and activities.
• Are attractive and vibrant places that create positive experiences for residents and visitors. Great Places have a strong sense of place, and often have interesting details, scenic vistas, public art, historic architecture, pedestrian amenities, and streetscape improvements.
• Often times they serve as economic stimuli for local communities.
• Marie York, representing the APA, will speak on the APA’s national designation program and why Plaza Real was selected; the significance of the designation to the state, community, tourism, real estate, general business, etc.
• Julia A. Trevarthen, AICP; Planning, Zoning, Development Director for the City of Boca Raton will serve as M.C.
• City of Boca Raton Mayor Susan Whelchel.
• City of Boca Raton Deputy Mayor Susan Haynie.
• City of Boca Raton CRA Chair and City Council Member Constance Scott.
• City of Boca Raton Council Member Mike Mullaugh.
• Palm Beach County Commissioner Steve Abrams.
• Public-Private Partners involved in conception and stewardship of Mizner Park, including Leigh Gove, VP of Crocker & Company.
• Community leaders in business, tourism, real estate.
• Members of City departments and citizen advisory committees/boards in a variety of areas.
• A quartet from the Boca Raton Symphonia, Boca Raton’s own orchestra, will perform.