Lin Yao Liao. Bench. February 05th , 2018.
The most important decision that needs to be made in selecting a bench, or any other type of public space amenity, is whether it is needed and whether it will be used. This requires visiting the area and noting the types of seating that already exist; the types of land uses (e.g., shops, offices, residences) that are along the street; and the potential clientele (e.g., office workers, shoppers) in the area who would be likely to use the benches. Locations where people already sit (on steps, ledges, etc.) should also be noted. This type of on-site observation is important in making decisions about where, how many, and what types of benches are needed.
Because many cities are not adequately staffed for a good bench maintenance program, benches are sometimes left derelict and broken benches are left in disrepair. This problem is magnified when people see the neglect and then make generalizations that influence their perceptions or feelings about the entire downtown.
A second factor in bench design is appearance. It is important that a bench fits in with its surroundings. The reason for this is that a bench, which appears to be an extension of the property it sits next to, will help to give a proprietary feel to the street. This increases the likelihood that business owners will take care of the bench (and the street) that will, in turn, have a positive effect on safety and security in the area.
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