Mayor Adams Appoints Ya-Ting Liu as NYC’s First-Ever Chief Public Realm Officer

New York City Mayor Eric Adams has appointed Ya-Ting Liu as the city’s first-ever chief public realm officer, creating a new cabinet position to oversee the creation of more “extraordinary public spaces” across the five boroughs.[0] Liu is currently Deputy Mayor for Operations Meera Joshi’s chief strategy officer and will continue to serve in that role concurrently with her new charge.[1]

Adams’ decision to appoint Liu as chief public realm officer is part of a larger initiative to “drive” the city’s economic rebound from COVID, according to his office. She will be responsible for leading the execution of a permanent outdoor dining program in partnership with the City Council and managing the investment of $375 million to create and expand public spaces in all five boroughs.[1] This includes the Broadway Vision plan, a full reconstruction of Jamaica Avenue from Sutphin Boulevard to Merrick Boulevard, and permanent upgrades to Open Streets in the Bronx and on Staten Island.[2]

Liu is a prominent advocate who had previously worked for Transportation Alternatives, a bike and pedestrian advocacy group, and the New York League of Conservation Voters.[2] She is well known in transportation and environmental advocacy circles and her appointment has been rumored for weeks.[0]

Adams declared in a statement that “Our city’s public spaces are too important to fall through the cracks of bureaucracy, and now they won’t,” Ya-Ting Liu is the perfect choice to serve as the inaugural chief public realm officer for New York City, for she has the vision and determination needed to make a positive impact on the quality of life of its residents. She is committed to creating wonderful public spaces and keeping the existing ones clean, fair, and secure. Liu is sure to “New Yorkers need to know there is one person at City Hall whose number one goal is to improve their quality of life by creating incredible, new public spaces and ensuring the ones we have are clean, equitable, and safe. As someone who knows how to think big and ‘Get Stuff Done’ for New Yorkers, Ya-Ting Liu is the right person to serve as the city’s first-ever chief public realm officer.” for the people of New York.

Liu echoed Adams’ sentiment, saying, “In New York City, the public realm is everyone’s living room. It’s where we eat, play, and gather.[3] Having beautiful public spaces accessible to all people is one of our greatest assets — it is what makes New York City so special.

0. “Mayor Adams taps former transit advocate to oversee NYC's public spaces” Gothamist, 16 Feb. 2023,

1. “Ya-Ting Liu named New York City's first chief public realm officer – New York Business Journal” The Business Journals, 16 Feb. 2023,

2. “Mayor Adams names Ya-Ting Liu for new position in charge of NYC public spaces” New York Daily News, 16 Feb. 2023,

3. “Adams creates new public realm chief position, taps Ya-Ting Liu to fill the role” AMNY, 16 Feb. 2023,