A city square is also known as a public square, town square or market square. It is an open public space usually located at the heart of a city or town. Some of the major uses of these public squares include political rallies, music concerts, or weekend markets, but each city will have its own unique scheduling for events. Since they are centrally situated, city squares are usually surrounded by important economic, political and cultural institutions like city halls, courtrooms, museums, shops, etc. Most of the city squares in the United States have a statue, a monument, a well or a fountain at the center. Here are the top five largest city squares in the United States.
1. Millennium Park
Millennium Park is found in "the Loop" in Chicago, Illinois. The park occupies about 99,000 square meters of the northwestern parts of Grant Park. It is surrounded by East Monroe Drive, Columbus Drive, Randolph Street and Michigan Avenue. The park was opened on July 16, 2004, and some of its features include the Lurie Garden, Crown Fountain, Cloud Gate (also known as "the Bean") and the Jay Pritzker Pavilion. Millennium Park also has a wide selection of public arts, and it became the site for Chicago’s annual Christmas tree lighting in 2015. The park was trailing only Navy Pier as the tourist attraction site in Chicago in 2009, but in 2017, it became the leading tourist attraction site in the American Midwest.
2. New Haven Green
The 65,000-square meter New Haven Green is surrounded by the paved roads of Church, Elm, Chapel, and College Streets. It is a privately-owned city park in New Haven, Connecticut. The park is divided into the lower and upper halves by Temple Street cutting through it. It hosts numerous public events like classical music and summer jazz concerts, the New Haven Jazz Festival and the Arts and Ideas Festival. The park is one of the most popular and oldest town squares in the United States, built in 1638.
3. Grand Park
Grand Park is a portion of the Grand Avenue development in Los Angeles, which opened in July of 2012. It is a 48,562-square meter park which is in the center of the sprawling city. The park was a joint venture between LA county and the city of Los Angeles. It stretches from the LA Music center to the City Hall. It is a pedestrian-friendly park that connects the civic center and Bunker Hill. The Los Angeles Music Center is in charge of the park’s upkeep, security and entertainment.
4. Washington Square Park
Washington Square Park is one of the most popular of the 1,900 public parks in New York. The 39,000-square meter public park is in Greenwich Village, Lower Manhattan. It is a cultural activities center, a meeting place as well as a landmark in the United States. The Washington Square Arch makes up the northern gateway of the city square. The fountain area is a famous spot for tourists as well as residents. New York University owns a majority of the buildings bordering the park, but some of them were studios and homes for artists in the past. Washington Square Park was created in 1871.
5. Sonoma Plaza
Sonoma Plaza is a 32,000-square meter park in the center of the town of Sonoma, California. It is surrounded by important historical buildings, and at its center can be found the Sonoma city hall, a beautiful building with four identical sides so that all merchants surrounding the square have the same view. Designed over 150 years ago, the plaza is historically significant as it was the location of the Bear Flag Revolt in 1846, which marked the beginning of the short-lived California Republic. The symbol of this revolt can be found on California’s state flag. It is located between 1st Street East and 1st Street West, where West Napa Street and East Napa Street meet.