Friday was Park(ing) Day in Seattle, which allowed citizens, businesses, and other groups to transform parking spots into activated spaces. It’s an opportunity not just to create some sweet hangout spaces, but to get really creative: past years have included bowling, ball pits, and even chickens.
This year, like past year, Park(ing) Day was part of the Seattle Design Festival, and everyone from small businesses to advocacy groups to design firms threw their hats in the ring. Or on the parking strip.
Here’s a selection of just a few out of 62 parklets that popped up all over the city last week.
A big pool of grass
Montgomery Townsend built a big community pool... lined with grass for lounging rather than swimming. But it had a cute little ladder and everything!
A high-design lemonade stand
Weisman Design Group laid down some astro turf and built a giant-but-adorable lemon—plus some other matching decor—out of cardboard tubes in Madison Park.
A collaborative sea mural
A nautical backdrop framed a collaborative mural facilitated by Mithun.
A “unicorn zoo” in Belltown
Park no. 32 is the Belltown Unicorn Zoo, a commentary on corporatocracy and startup culture whose name comes from the term for a startup valued at over $1 billion. #parkingday #PARKingDaySea pic.twitter.com/z47E2zlA6s— Sierra Club Seattle (@SierraClubSEA) September 21, 2018
Bike repair and information
“Bike Bike Revolution: Take to the Streets!” was a collaboration between Bike Works, Rainier Valley Greenways, Refuge Outdoor Festival, Black Girls Do Bike, and Cascade Bicycle Club.
A beach day
This beach day wasn’t all fun and games; while this installation by Mikala Woodward included some towel lounge space, it was also an exploration of the impacts of climate change on sea level.
For #PARKingDaySeattle, @350_Seattle brought the beach to Pioneer Square - showing how far sea level rise could move the waterline | #parkingdaysea @impacthub pic.twitter.com/ZLmxqwZUHP— Rod Huntress (@rodhuntress) September 21, 2018
A pop-up bike lane
Park No. 34 is Pop Up Protected Lane on Capitol Hill #PARKingDaySea Vote for your favorite PARK(ing) Day group today https://t.co/qJNcjLhb1C pic.twitter.com/MISXogD23h— Cascade Bicycle Club (@CascadeBicycle) September 21, 2018
Wow! Build it and they will come! Tactical urbanism does it again! DIY protected bike lane for #ParkingDaySea by @CSGreenways @absentm1nd @Gyncild @HillEcoDistrict pic.twitter.com/6neDVISmJX— Seattle Greenways (@SNGreenways) September 21, 2018
Collaborative community planning
A big theme this year was taking community members’ input on city planning and transportation—including a collaborative sculpture in Green Lake.
West Seattle, we are ready for you! Come visit us on Delridge! #parkingdaySEA pic.twitter.com/hywEH3MIkD— SeattleNeighborhood (@SeaNeighborhood) September 21, 2018
The Department of Neighborhoods has a SPINNY WHEEL. You can answer questions about what you like about your neighborhood, and what you’d like to see improved. #parkingday #PARKingDaySea pic.twitter.com/lpzlNMqz9S— Sierra Club Seattle (@SierraClubSEA) September 21, 2018
Hula hooping it up in the U District! #PARKingDaySea pic.twitter.com/Mx2GJrJ6YJ— SeattleNeighborhood (@SeaNeighborhood) September 21, 2018
A giant see-saw table
This isn’t the first time a giant see-saw has made an appearance—Weisman did one last year—but this one from Via Architecture is more of a bench.
An challenging seesaw bench from @viaarchitecture #ParkingDay2018 #parkingdaysea pic.twitter.com/HxAGMtIlir— Cathy Tuttle (@CathyTuttle) September 21, 2018
Board and Vellum built a deck out of Kebony wood and set up a giant Jenga game.
Parklets in the U District and Pioneer Square had opportunities to make music happen—or to sit back and enjoy some tunes.
Regular ol’ hangout space.
The most popular option, as always: spaces to sit, relax, read, hang, and think.
More memories from PARK(ing) Day.— Green Lake & Wallingford Safe Streets (@GLWstreets) September 23, 2018
Photos by @tweetyrobink. Children are students at La Esquelita Bilingual School.#PARKingDay #PARKingDaySEA #PARKingDaySeattle #PARKingDay2018 #TacticalUrbanism #GLWstreets #SEAbikes #GreenLake #Wallingford pic.twitter.com/i8XS80lYg5
Northwest school providing seats and food and inspiration. #PARKingDaySea #Parkingday2018 pic.twitter.com/OZPB8BE4ft— S. (@seattle_sanchez) September 21, 2018