Video, Photos and More: The Best of PARK(ing) Day 2013

Next City took to the streets on Friday to check out how Philadelphians celebrated this year’s PARKing day.

Philadelphia-based Patrike Design Workshop surveyed passersby on their mode of transportation used to travel to work, school and play on the morning of PARK Day. Photo credit: Liz Maillie

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PARKing Day started in 2005 when San Francisco design firm Rebar transformed one metered parking space into a temporary public park, and has become an international event. For one day each year, participating cities in more than 35 countries reserve countless parking spaces not for cars but for architects, artists, urban planners, neighborhood associations and others, who then convert them into everything from parklets to temporary classrooms to survey booths.

No matter what form an installation takes, PARKing Day remains rooted in the original vision behind Rebar’s 2005 project, which lasted all of two hours: To challenge existing notions of public space and empower people to help redefine space to suit community needs.

Last Friday, Next City took to the streets to check out how Philadelphians celebrated this year’s PARKing day. We managed to visit only some of the more than 40 spaces across the city, but we were excited to learn that one of our favorites, an installation created by the Community Design Collaborative and the Philadelphia Water Department called PSH20, may end up sticking around for a bit longer than expected.

Landscape designer and consultant Nicholas Chaya, who was behind the concept of PSH20, told Next City that the Fairmount Water Works Interpretive Center is considering taking the pop-up classroom on the road.

“The idea is that this installation would act like a traveling pop-up garden,” Chaya said, “visiting Philadelphia schools and showing students, teachers and administrators how the Green Schools Initiative can not only make schools greener and more sustainable on the outside, but transform schools into cutting-edge learning centers preparing students to solve tomorrow’s design challenges on the inside.”

Just across the street from Next City’s office, Bohlin Cywinski Jackson’s “lifted lawn” installation was visible from blocks away. Check out a time lapse video of its PARKing day space, located on a busy corner along Philadelphia’s Avenue of the Arts:

Bohlin Cywinski Jackson’s Park(ing) Day Installation in Philadelphia from Next City on Vimeo.

This slideshow features photos from some of our favorite PARKing Day installations here in Philly, as well as those from cities across the country. (Thanks to everyone who shared.)

Gallery: Park(ing) Day 2013

Plenty of parkers tweeted us, too. Here are our favorites from social media:

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Tags: philadelphiatactical urbanism

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