CHAPTER 1

Theoretical Background and Methods

In New York (High Line and Lowline), Chicago (Bloomingdale Trail/606), and Philadelphia (Rail Park) between 1999 and 2017, nonprofit community groups have attempted to or have successfully created public–private coalitions to repurpose neglected urban public spaces into urban parks. These case studies are located in similar cities, the projects started around the same time (or were strongly influenced by each other), the groups are trying to do similar things, and yet the projects are in very different stages of project development.

These urban park projects combine long-term entrepreneurial efforts of advocacy groups with key site characteristics. Both have to be compelling and plausible in getting ...

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