A street is a paved public thoroughfare in a built environment. It is a public parcel of land adjoining buildings in an urban context, on which people may freely assemble, interact, and move about. A street can be as simple as a level patch of dirt, but is more often paved with a hard, durable surface such as concrete, cobblestone or brick. Portions may also be smoothed with asphalt, embedded with rails, or otherwise prepared to accommodate non-pedestrian traffic.
Originally the word "street" simply meant a paved road (Latin: "via strata"). The word "street" is still sometimes used colloquially as a synonym for "road", for example in connection with the ancient Watling Street, but city residents and urban planners draw a crucial modern distinction: a road's main function is transportation, while streets facilitate public interaction. Examples of streets include pedestrian streets, alleys, and city-centre streets too crowded for road vehicles to pass. Conversely, highways and motorways are types of roads, but few would refer to them as streets.
Famous quotes containing the word street:
“And in these dark cells,
packed street after street,
souls live, hideous yet
O disfigured, defaced,
with no trace of the beauty
men once held so light.”
—Hilda Doolittle (18861961)
“Anger becomes limiting, restricting. You cant see through it. While anger is there, look at that, too. But after a while, you have to look at something else.”
—Thylias Moss, African American poet. As quoted in the Wall Street Journal (May 12, 1994)
“The American father ... is never seen in London. He passes his life entirely in Wall Street and communicates with his family once a month by means of a telegram in cipher.”
—Oscar Wilde (18541900)