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This is an IELTS writing task 2 sample answer essay on the topic of building public spaces from the real IELTS exam.

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Dave

IELTS Essay: Building Public Places

Some believe it is important for cities and towns to invest heavily in building large outdoor public spaces.

To what extent do you agree or disagree?

Many today claim that cities and towns have a responsibility to erect communal, outdoor spaces for residents. I am in agreement with this viewpoint, though I concede there are other important areas requiring attention.

Detractors to significant funding for public spaces argue there are more pressing budgetary concerns. All governments must balance allocations between key areas ranging from healthcare and education to housing and economic growth. One common policy proposal is that the majority of problems could be dealt with through more robust governmental economic intervention. The standout examples underpinning such a contention are developed countries in North America, the United States and East Asia. Once the economies of those nations started to grow rapidly, citizens were able to provide for themselves and their families, lessening the burden on governments to fight crime, fund education, extend healthcare benefits, and so on.

Nonetheless, public spaces meet a wide variety of needs for the average city or town resident. Sufficient public space is typically considered one with high quality of life. Take New York City for example. Before Central Park was constructed, the island was mainly a place of business and people lived outside the city. Central Park’s development now allows residents to go for runs in the park, attend cultural events such as outdoor plays, hang out with friends in nature, and play various sports. These activities are some of the chief reasons to live in a densely populated city and they bring a vitality to the city that, more than any other single factor other than perhaps employment opportunities, justifies urban life.

In conclusion, despite legitimate doubts, it is my belief that heavy investment into public spaces is warranted due to the diverse range of ramifications for a citizenry. Governments should endeavour to prioritise such investment.

Analysis

1. Many today claim that cities and towns have a responsibility to erect communal, outdoor spaces for residents. 2. I am in agreement with this viewpoint, though I concede there are other important areas requiring attention.

  1. Paraphrase the overall essay topic.
  2. Write a clear opinion. Read more about introductions here.

1. Detractors to significant funding for public spaces argue there are more pressing budgetary concerns. 2. All governments must balance allocations between key areas ranging from healthcare and education to housing and economic growth. 3. One common policy proposal is that the majority of problems could be dealt with through more robust governmental economic intervention. 4. The standout examples underpinning such a contention are developed countries in North America, the United States and East Asia. 5. Once the economies of those nations started to grow rapidly, citizens were able to provide for themselves and their families, lessening the burden on governments to fight crime, fund education, extend healthcare benefits, and so on.

  1. Write a topic sentence with a clear main idea at the end.
  2. Explain your main idea.
  3. Develop it with specific examples.
  4. Continue to develop it.
  5. State the result.

1. Nonetheless, public spaces meet a wide variety of needs for the average city or town resident. 2. Sufficient public space is typically considered one with high quality of life. 3. Take New York City for example. 4. Before Central Park was constructed, the island was mainly a place of business and people lived outside the city. 5. Central Park’s development now allows residents to go for runs in the park, attend cultural events such as outdoor plays, hang out with friends in nature, and play various sports. 6. These activities are some of the chief reasons to live in a densely populated city and they bring a vitality to the city that, more than any other single factor other than perhaps employment opportunities, justifies urban life.

  1. Write a new topic sentence with a new main idea at the end.
  2. Explain your new main idea.
  3. Include specific details and examples.
  4. The more specific, the better.
  5. Continue your development.
  6. Add on any extra detail that you can that is related for a better task achievement score.

1. In conclusion, despite legitimate doubts, it is my belief that heavy investment into public spaces is warranted due to the diverse range of ramifications for a citizenry. 2. Governments should endeavour to prioritise such investment.

  1. Summarise your main ideas.
  2. Include a final thought. Read more about conclusions here.

Vocabulary

What do the words in bold below mean? Make some notes and then check below.

Many today claim that cities and towns have a responsibility to erect communal, outdoor spaces for residents. I am in agreement with this viewpoint, though I concede there are other important areas requiring attention.

Detractors to significant funding for public spaces argue there are more pressing budgetary concerns. All governments must balance allocations between key areas ranging from healthcare and education to housing and economic growth. One common policy proposal is that the majority of problems could be dealt with through more robust governmental economic intervention. The standout examples underpinning such a contention are developed countries in North America, the United States and East Asia. Once the economies of those nations started to grow rapidly, citizens were able to provide for themselves and their families, lessening the burden on governments to fight crime, fund education, extend healthcare benefits, and so on.

Nonetheless, public spaces meet a wide variety of needs for the average city or town resident. Sufficient public space is typically considered one with high quality of life. Take New York City for example. Before Central Park was constructed, the island was mainly a place of business and people lived outside the city. Central Park’s development now allows residents to go for runs in the park, attend cultural events such as outdoor plays, hang out with friends in nature, and play various sports. These activities are some of the chief reasons to live in a densely populated city and they bring a vitality to the city that, more than any other single factor other than perhaps employment opportunities, justifies urban life.

In conclusion, despite legitimate doubts, it is my belief that heavy investment into public spaces is warranted due to the diverse range of ramifications for a citizenry. Governments should endeavour to prioritise such investment.

Answers

claim suppose

responsibility duty

erect communal build community

outdoor spaces places outside

I am in agreement with this viewpoint I agree

concede will grant that

requiring attention need people caring about

detractors critics

significant funding a lot of money

public spaces communal places such as libraries, sculptures, parks

more pressing budgetary concerns more important areas to fund

balance allocations giving money to

key areas essential sectors

ranging from including

housing where people live

economic growth more money being earned

common policy proposal often suggested

majority most of

dealt with handle

robust strong

intervention interfere with

standout outlier

underpinning foundational

contention opinion

grow rapidly increase a lot

provide for allow for

lessening reducing

burden duty

extend healthcare benefits improve hospitals and care

nonetheless regardless

public spaces outdoor public places

wide variety of needs many requirements

sufficient enough

high quality of life good standard of living

constructed built

go for runs take a jog

attend cultural events go to plays, museums, etc.

outdoor plays theater outside

chief reasons main justifications

densely populated crowded

vitality life

more than any other single factor the most important element

perhaps maybe

justifies urban life good reason for living in a city

despite legitimate doubts regardless of the valid criticisms

heavy investment lots of money put into it

warranted deserved

diverse variety

ramifications results

citizenry people, residents

endeavour try

Pronunciation

kleɪm 
rɪsˌpɒnsəˈbɪlɪti 
ɪˈrɛkt ˈkɒmjʊnl 
ˈaʊtdɔː ˈspeɪsɪz 
aɪ æm ɪn əˈgriːmənt wɪð ðɪs ˈvjuːpɔɪnt 
kənˈsiːd 
rɪˈkwaɪərɪŋ əˈtɛnʃ(ə)n 
dɪˈtræktəz 
sɪgˈnɪfɪkənt ˈfʌndɪŋ 
ˈpʌblɪk ˈspeɪsɪz 
mɔː ˈprɛsɪŋ ˈbʌʤɪtəri kənˈsɜːnz 
ˈbæləns ˌæləʊˈkeɪʃ(ə)nz 
kiː ˈeərɪəz 
ˈreɪnʤɪŋ frɒm 
ˈhaʊzɪŋ 
ˌiːkəˈnɒmɪk grəʊθ
ˈkɒmən ˈpɒlɪsi prəˈpəʊzəl 
məˈʤɒrɪti 
dɛlt wɪð 
rəʊˈbʌst 
ˌɪntə(ː)ˈvɛnʃən
ˈstændaʊt 
ˌʌndəˈpɪnɪŋ 
kənˈtɛnʃən 
grəʊ ˈræpɪdli
prəˈvaɪd fɔː 
ˈlɛsnɪŋ 
ˈbɜːdn 
ɪksˈtɛnd ˈhɛlθkeə ˈbɛnɪfɪts
ˌnʌnðəˈlɛs
ˈpʌblɪk ˈspeɪsɪz 
waɪd vəˈraɪəti ɒv niːdz 
səˈfɪʃənt 
haɪ ˈkwɒlɪti ɒv laɪf
kənˈstrʌktɪd
gəʊ fɔː rʌnz 
əˈtɛnd ˈkʌlʧərəl ɪˈvɛnts 
ˈaʊtdɔː pleɪz
ʧiːf ˈriːznz 
ˈdɛnsli ˈpɒpjʊleɪtɪd 
vaɪˈtælɪti 
mɔː ðæn ˈɛni ˈʌðə ˈsɪŋgl ˈfæktə 
pəˈhæps 
ˈʤʌstɪfaɪz ˈɜːbən laɪf
dɪsˈpaɪt lɪˈʤɪtɪmɪt daʊts
ˈhɛvi ɪnˈvɛstmənt 
ˈwɒrəntɪd 
daɪˈvɜːs 
ˌræmɪfɪˈkeɪʃənz 
ˈsɪtɪznri
ɪnˈdɛvə 

Vocabulary Practice

I recommend getting a pencil and piece of paper because that aids memory. Then write down the missing vocabulary from my sample answer in your notebook:

Many today c_________m that cities and towns have a r______________y to e__________________l, o________________s for residents. I___________________________________t, though I c___________e there are other important areas r__________________n.

D______________s to s______________________g for p______________s argue there are m______________________________s. All governments must b_______________________s between k_________________________m healthcare and education to h___________g and e___________________h. One c__________________________l is that the m_____________y of problems could be d_____________h through more r________t governmental economic i______________n. The s____________t examples u_________________g such a c_____________n are developed countries in North America, the United States and East Asia. Once the economies of those nations started to g____________y, citizens were able to p______________r themselves and their families, l_____________g the b___________n on governments to fight crime, fund education, e_____________________________s, and so on.

N__________________s, p________________s meet a w________________________s for the average city or town resident. S___________t public space is typically considered one with h_____________________e. Take New York City for example. Before Central Park was c_____________d, the island was mainly a place of business and people lived outside the city. Central Park’s development now allows residents to g________________s in the park, a_________________________s such as o______________s, hang out with friends in nature, and play various sports. These activities are some of the c__________________s to live in a d_______________________d city and they bring a v__________y to the city that, m______________________________r other than p____________s employment opportunities, j______________________e.

In conclusion, d_________________________s, it is my belief that h__________________________t into public spaces is w_____________d due to the d__________e range of r________________s for a c____________y. Governments should e_______________r to prioritise such investment.

Listening Practice

Learn more about this topic in the video below and practice with these activities:

Reading Practice

Read more about this topic and use these ideas to practice:

https://www.wired.com/story/to-mend-a-broken-internet-create-online-parks/

Speaking Practice

Practice with the following speaking questions from the real IELTS speaking exam:

Talk about a public building that you would like to visit

Include:

Where it is

Why you want to visit

If you will visit it

Writing Practice

Practice with the related topic below and then check with my sample answer:

Too much money is wasted on repairing old buildings that should be used to knock them down and build new ones.

To what extent do you agree or disagree?


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