Less parking, more parks

I’m an American, and one thing that says about me is that I like my parking plentiful and I like it free. I also talk loud, wear clunky white sneakers and eat junk food like a seagull – at least, according to some stereotypes.

But if you’re going to take away my parking, please use it for something I like better than parking – a park. Wide open spaces are another typically American affinity, and one that’s not embarrassing.

In the French Quarter of Vancouver, British Columbia, local businesses are putting up the funds to turn two parking spots into a parklet. The parklet will become an open space for residents and visitors to eat or rest or read and will feature a “bicycle bar” that riders can pull up to without getting off their bikes. The parklet’s supporters hope it will create a sense of community and encourage people to socialize, relax, and spend a little money in the neighborhood.

“Everyone in the buildings and homes around signed onto the project. We got an enormous amount of support. In terms of opposition, I met only a single person who said they weren’t interested in losing the parking,” said Anne-Geneviève Poitras, the sponsor of the parklet, which will measure about about 27 square metres.

In Vancouver, three parklets have already been put in place and six more are planned for 2014. I like it and I hope it’s a trend that other Americans can embrace, too.

Read the article here.

 

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