“Public spaces are all places publicly owned or of public use, accessible and enjoyable by all for free and without a profit motive”.
The definition captures the spirit and essence of “public space”. The essence of public space as a common good implies its accessibility to all with no direct cost to the user, and also its spirit of “public service” without any purpose other than contributing to the overall quality of urban life. The term “place” is used to allude to the inherent quality all good public spaces should possess, and also because some veritable public spaces, like public libraries, cannot be properly defined as “spaces”. Both publicly- and privately owned public spaces are contemplated, although public ownership often guarantees more stable access and enjoyment over time. The absence of a profit motive is an integral part of the definition because many privately operated open spaces and facilities are subject to restrictions not governed by the community and are created, rather than for the benefit of all city users, to attract consumers.