Open Voices Blog

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Park(ing) Day: Temporary public space, lasting impression

08/13/15 | View Comments

Park(ing) Day installation in Dublin, Ireland.

In many urban environments, open, public space is often a commodity in short supply. Parks, gardens and green space compete with roads, parking lots, commercial development and other demands of the city. But what if for a few precious moments, these urban spaces could be temporarily transformed into public parks? What effect would it have on the surrounding neighborhood? Would the transformation leave a lasting impact on how people view the space?

These are some of the questions asked by the Park(ing) project held on the third Friday of September. Now in it’s tenth year, Park(ing) Day invites neighbors, artists, activists and others to transform metered parking spaces into public space for the time purchased on the meter. Once the meter expires, so does the “lease” on the space. The temporary park is packed away and the space returns to it’s original purpose as a parking space.

The first Park(ing) day installation by Rebar.

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    We are a private nonprofit that supports, informs, and inspires the creation of publicly accessible urban green spaces. We believe that every city resident needs nearby green space to provide opportunities for mindfulness, respite, and renewal. The Foundation has issued its final grants to build five Open Spaces Sacred Places and research the impacts on a variety of users with the hope that the powerful connection between nature, spirit and human wellbeing will be scientifically proven.

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