Small urban spaces : programming for good tot lots
Author(s)Simon, Carolina Natividade, 1974-
Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Dept. of Urban Studies and Planning.
Jean P. de Monchaux.
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This thesis is about small urban spaces, specifically tot lots in dense neighborhoods. It includes a literature review on small urban spaces and playgrounds, and site-specific research based on both a survey of users and direct observation of three tot lots in Cambridge, MA. Initially, this thesis set out to explore whether good tot lots could potentially attract community members beyond children and parents. Ultimately, my observations of these tot lots did not reveal convincing evidence of attributes that would foster other interactions aside from those that evolve around children. In the end, this thesis identified the indicators that signal good tot lot design, the attributes of goodness. This study found a large overlay between the attributes identified in the literature reviewed, and those that people perceived as being good qualities in the three tot lots studied. These attributes are: play equipment, scale, sun and shade, safety and management. However, the literature on playgrounds did not reveal attributes other than the ones directly related to play equipment and child development. For the attributes not covered by the literature, I have relied on my own set of observations to reveal the ones that contribute to the quality of the tot lots studied. These attributes are: furniture, surroundings, landscaping, optimal capacity, social function, accessibility, proximity and frequency of use . In sum, this thesis proposes indicators that signal good tot lots and suggests an evaluation process that has proven to be effective in identifying these attributes in addition to evaluating the performance of tot lots.
Thesis (M.C.P.)--Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Dept. of Urban Studies and Planning, 2003.Includes bibliographical references (leaves 20-72).
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Dept. of Urban Studies and Planning.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Urban Studies and Planning.