Times Square is one of the central spaces of New York, the place in which the new year is celebrated, and also a sizeable theatrical district. The site is the crossing of Broadway and the 7th Avenue; Broadway is a diagonal on the Manhattan grid, an interesting thing usually in terms of traffic, but the angle with the avenues is so small that it seems its real interest is more reduced (this is just a tourist view…).
In 2009 the Mayor of New York decides, as an experiment, to pedestrianise the areas of Times Square on which Broadway ran. Given the initial geometry, these surfaces are small (the 4 elements represented on the map are not even an acre). But the potential for pedestrian use, among other things to put public chairs as in Parisian gardens, has proved enormous. These surfaces have been repaved with a special design resulting from a competition, and the provisional has become permanent.
It is interesting to browse the Times Square District Management Association website, a Bussiness Improvement District grouping the retailers and other bussinesses in the area, which among other things publishes statistics on the use of the public space, including pedestrian use, interesting data on a space that is not only a metropolitan hub but also a powerful tourism magnet.