PARK(ing) Day is returning to downtown Phoenix

PARK(ing) Day is returning to downtown Phoenix on Friday, September 17th. Building on the success of last years efforts, several community members, neighborhood leaders and urbanites have gathered together and are ready to step up to the curb, put a quarter in the meter, and transform curbside metered parking spots into temporary public parks.

When they do, they will join artists and activists all over the globe for PARK(ing) Day 2010. This annual, one-day event promotes green and public spaces in the urban core.  It helps people rethink the way we use our streets and creates diverse conversations about how we can make sustainable cities. This concept of PARK(ing) Day is that putting money into a parking meter is like renting a public space.

Since its founding in San Francisco in 2005, PARK(ing) Day  has blossomed into a worldwide grassroots movement: PARK(ing) Day events have included more than 500 “PARK” installations in more than 100 cities on four continents, including PARK installations in South Africa, Poland, Norway, New Zealand and South Korea.

PARK(ing) Day is an opportunity to create community, engage the public and begin a dialogue on topics ranging from city parks and public space to the environment to mobility options and community improvement projects. Well-known urban activist and author Jane Jacobs wrote in The Death and Life of Great American Cities that, to create a safe, prosperous and worth living in, one must start with “lively and interesting streets.”

All Phoenicians are invited to get creative and join the effort—for an hour or two, or all day if you’d like. All you need to do is come up with ideas for a ‘temporary park,’ gather items to fit that theme, invite your friends to take part, and show up ready to be part of the movement.

So far, several groups have confirmed their participation.  The University of ArizonaCollege of Medicine, the Downtown Phoenix Partnership Ambassadors, an Arizona State University “Art Action” team and the Arizona Democratic Party  will be setting up their own spots in downtown Phoenix.  On Adams St, between Central and 1st Aves, a group of urban advocates will be joined by  the CO+HOOTS co-working crew.

Most groups will be setting up their spots first thing in the morning (7-10am), to avoid the mid-day heat, so feel free to stop by on he way to work!

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