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desire line

desire line
 n.— «Note long ago, a friend told me about an intriguing concept called “desire lines.” It seems that when landscape architects lay out walking paths and trails in parks and other public spaces, they invariably find that people soon begin to make their own informal paths, cutting across from one walkway to another or going off in a new direction entirely. Sometimes these new paths are accepted and given official status. Sometimes they are roped or fenced off, though this rarely discourages their use for long. More often they are simply ignored and remain rough unofficial tracks. Whatever becomes of them, these unauthorized paths are formally known in the profession as “desire lines.”» —“Purposefully straying from the path” by Robert Finch Los Angeles Times (California) July 5, 2005. (source: Double-Tongued Dictionary)

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