On Thursday, mayor Susan Welchel accepted a national award on behalf of Boca Raton. The American Planning Association named Plaza Real in Mizner Park one of the 10 Great Public Spaces in America!
Along with familiar names such as Bryant Park in New York and Rittenhouse Square in Philadelphia, Plaza Real received this distinction because, for many reasons, it is an exceptional place. It attracts visitors every day and came about as the result of private and public collaboration.
As the volunteer head of the CRA, Jamie Snyder, who was singled out as the prime mover of Mizner Park, and her committee worked diligently with the city and Crocker & Company to plan and develop this once blighted area of downtown Boca.
In presenting the plaque, the corporate officer of the American Planning Commission, Marie York, noted that Plaza Real came about as a result of this collaboration. She also noted that Mizner Park is considered by planners to be one of the first and most successful examples in the country of a former mall site being redeveloped for mixed uses.
Today Boca Raton can be proud of this special place – that it created, as noted by Constance Scott, chair of the Boca Raton Redevelopment Authority, “a wonderful place to work, live and play.”