The ability to observe the private lives of strangers from the windows of my home is one reason why I’ve chosen to reside within a dense urban fabric. I am not a voyeur: I do not receive sexual satisfaction from watching the daily lives of others. But I do like to imagine the many meaningful “relationships” I have created with people that I will never meet or even recognize on the street. — Places Journal
When architect Melissa Dittmer moved from New York City to Detroit, her reaction was a "year-long panic attack." Where, she wondered, were the people? "Where was the density, the sense of connection with strangers?" But then Dittmer and her family bought a townhouse in Lafayette Park, the modernist development created in the early '60 by Mies van der Rohe, Ludwig Hilberseimer and Alfred Caldwell — a place where the design itself encourages "a shared sense of intimacy that fosters community." On Places, she writes about how the architecture and landscape design of Lafayette Park conspire to create a sense of ordered exhibitionism, in a chapter from the new book Thanks for the View, Mr. Mies.