Goodbye Car, Hello Parklet! Check Out Top Picks From PARK(ing) Day

A parklet on Valencia Street in 2009. Photo: Tristan C/Flickr

In case you missed the memo, today is PARK(ing) Day around the world. Contrary to its name, PARK(ing) Day is a playful protest against car-based city planning: participants, including architects and artists, take over metered spots and transform them into SUV-sized rec areas complete with hammocks, Astroturf, and even pop-up mini-golf courses.

In honor of PARK(ing) Day 2012, we bring you a roundup of some great parklets that have sprouted up in recent years, plus some of the shots rolling in from today’s festivities. Read more!

On Haight and Clayton streets. Photo: Aaron Bialick via Streetsblog San Francisco.

Since its founding in 2005 by the San Francisco–based art and design studio Rebar, PARK(ing) Day has gone from guerrilla art project to worldwide phenom. Last year’s parklet fest included 975 park installations in more than 160 cities across six continents. “While PARK(ing) Day may be temporary,” Rebar principal John Bela said in an announcement, “the image of possibility it offers has lasting effects and is shifting the way streets are perceived and utilized.”

A game of mini-golf today in front of the San Jose planning and urban research org SPUR.
Photo: Matt Wright

A 2011 PARK(ing) Day installation at First and Howard streets, by STUDIOS Architecture, Holmes Culley, and Chris Chalmers. Photo via Streetsblog San Francisco.

A teepee-style parklet on Mission Street today. Photo: Steve Rhodes

Mission Street, 2011. Photo via Streetsblog San Francisco.

In front of the Oakland coworking space Tech Liminal today. Photo: Walk Oak Bike Oak.

Props to Portland, Maine, for one-upping the parklet trend with this “a-park-ment,” by bloggers from Rights of Way and Morgan Law of Kaplan-Thompson Architects.



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