Did you know that Living Plaza has free wi-fi? In fact, not only does the plaza have free wi-fi (call name DALSURF or DALPUBLIC), the library across the street has it (also DALPUBLIC) and so does One AT&T Plaza. The man in the image above downloaded me with this knowledge. He’s there just about every morning surfin’ away.
There are also some hidden outlets on the plaza that have become a popular nodes for our plaza regulars – some of them set up shop for the entire day. I’ve had several conversations with our plaza regulars and have found out that some of them are unemployed and part of what they do on a daily basis is search for jobs. Our regulars also bring their dogs with them to the plaza. They keep them on a leash, and have tags, everything is good. From time to time people complain about our regulars. They are told to move, or leave the plaza. They do, and then they eventually make their way back. It’s a strange little dance, but one that our regulars put up with because they want to use the space.
The plaza is a public space, which means that it’s open to everybody. While we have a monthly event to “activate” the plaza, it’s already teaming with life. Ultimately, the plaza is about people! It’s about connecting people and connecting the city. It’s a platform for interaction, collaboration, inspiration and a place for people to exchange ideas about how to make the city better. Our plaza regulars, are showing us how to use the plaza. They’re showing us that this mammoth space has small pockets of community life (like a metaphor for Dallas), they’re showing us how to cope with the heat, and how to cater to the needs of other people around them who have complaints. They’re the authorities, and have the insider knowledge of how things work. Next time you’re on the plaza, say hey to Shannon for me, heck say hi to everybody for me. They’re all very friendly and courteous. Or, just enjoy the plaza and take advantage of the free electricity and internet.