A simple but radical idea is set to reclaim some street space for L.A. pedestrians.
This article titled “The mini parks that could transform Los Angeles” was written by Rory Carroll, for The Guardian on Sunday 23rd September 2012 19.30 UTC
The idea is simple. Choose a street lined with cars, remove two of them, ring the space with plants, install a bench, table, bike racks and, hey presto: a park. A tiny one with a distinct rectangular shape perhaps, but still a park. Or, as those who created it say: a parklet.
Four parklets are about to infiltrate the citadel of automobile worshipping Los Angeles, a pilot project that could lead to hundreds more. “The goal is to create public space and re-purpose how we use streets,” says Madeline Brozen, programme manager of the Complete Streets Initiative. “The great thing about streets is they’re so transformable.” Los Angeles gave the green light last month and the parklets should be debuting within weeks – two on Spring Street downtown, one on Huntington Drive in El Sereno, and one on York Boulevard in Highland Park.”The idea is to bring things down to human scale so people can socialise and enjoy their own neighbourhoods.” She dismisses the notion that parklets are for hobbits. “There’ll be space to exercise, to sit and read, to talk.” Don’t all rush at once.