Smart cities all around the world are getting rid of highways, and in Madrid, not only has the city built a tunnel to drive a urban-fabric-ripping highway underground, it has turned the reclaimed land into a park.

In the New York Times, critic Michael Kimmelman tours the park and reports that, while "still a work in progress," it's connecting neighborhoods once cut off from each other. The idea to bury the highway came before the move to transform the land into a park, but the redesign is also part of a build-out of public transit that connects the outer boroughs to the inner city.

One detail from Kimmelman shows most clearly that the park is succeeding as a public space: there's a pool for toddlers that "landlocked Madrid parents already fondly call ‘the beach.’"

See: