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New York seems to work
By Dave Winer on Monday, June 28, 2010 at 7:13 AM.

I've lived on all kinds of streets in all kinds of neighborhoods, but I've never lived on streets that get so much use, so much attention and so much maintenence as the streets of New York. permalink

A few days ago, on the solstice, there were concerts in the parks and streets. Everywhere you went. Just walking around lower Manhattan I saw a half-dozen. But unless you were within earshot, you probably didn't even notice. That's how big this place is. permalink

Yesterday a huge parade wound its way through the avenues and streets. There were festivals with booths and stages. Huge crowds everywhere and this is the time of year when everyone's gone!  permalink

Yesterday the streets were so filled with people and junk it's amazing to see this morning they're clean. An army of workers with all kinds of equipment and tools worked through the night to get the city ready for another work week.  permalink

Meanwhile the World Cup was happening on the other side of the world, but there were big screens, outdoors, all over the city with people of all nationalities fixed on the outcome.  permalink

I've lived on streets where you almost never see a city worker. They just sort of take care of themselves. But New York is so heavily used, it requires so many people just to keep running. It's a wonder it actually works at all. permalink

There must be people whose whole careers are spent improving the way all these people work together, to make due with less as recessions and bankruptcies and acts of terrorism take their toll. permalink

There was a time, when I was growing up here, when it seemed the city was spiraling into chaos. There were riots. Parts of the city were burning. The government was deliberately "renewing" whole sections of the city, with often disastrous results. But all that seems to be over. Nowadays this place seems to actually work. permalink

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