It was, in effect, not an effective place. It was dispersed, disconnected strip malls. There was no there, there. And though there was plenty of vehicular traffic, there was no foot traffic — pedestrians. Zero bikers. Around here it's dangerous to be a pedestrian or a biker. There are few sidewalks and no bike lanes, and that's sad because there need to be diverse ways of getting around town. And on the street and in city squares is where the life of a place happens: the chance meeting, the "hey how are yas." The square is neighborly and pro-social. And don't just take my word for it, take theirs: "City Squares: Eighteen Writers on the Spirit and Significance of Squares Around the World," a new anthology of essays out this year.