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Into The 'Wild'

Atlantic Cities profiles urban planner and professor Daniel Campos's decade-long study of BEDT, a seven-acre abandoned rail yard on the East River waterfront in Williamsburg. It was?according to Campos's new book, The Accidental Playground?a perfect park precisely because it had the freedom to be: "What he found there was the urban human in its natural habitat: talking, contemplating, getting drunk, having sex, swimming, playing music. There were bagpipers and fire jugglers and fishermen. Local guys hung out and drank beer around barbecues, talking for hours. Skateboarders created a skate park called Shantytown." But now, the Domino megaproject looms along the water, and another, decidedly planned park has sprouted nearby in the interim. Needless to say, Campos would not approve. [AC]