By Tyler Falk
Posting in Cities
Boston is using parklets to create more public space in the city.
Using parking spaces and underutilized roadways, the city plans to create new parklets (mini-parks), according to the Boston Globe.
Here are some examples of different ways these tiny parks are used in San Francisco's parklet program:
For cafe seating:
For bike parking:
As a public gathering space:
The parklets will cost about $12,000 each to build. But the city will partner with local business owners to help with the cost. One business owner, Ken Hassett, is already on board. The Boston Globe reports:
As a business owner, Hassett said he likes adding a colorful, informal swath of outdoor seating near Wholy Grain, tucked into the first floor of a classic brick rowhouse at Shawmut Avenue and Hanson Street. As a resident who lives a few paces away, he likes what it promises to do for pedestrian life.
"Some of the people I’ve spoken to so far were slightly hesitant about, ‘Oh, we’re going to lose a parking space,’" Hassett said. "But then they began to think about it and think what a novel idea it would be."
It might seem counterintuitive at first that eliminating car parking could be good for business, but if more people are lingering around your business or can reach your business -- because more people can park their bikes in a spot than a car can park in a single spot -- it's a benefit.
If you're worried that car parking will be greatly compromised by this program, there are about 8,000 metered parking spots in the city. To put that into perspective, San Francisco, which has an official city parklet program, has 30 parklets.
Jun 19, 2012
Absolutely, yes. So obvious and sensible, It'll probably never happen. ya know how politicians are...
If a shop owner wants to give up parking in front of their store, they ought to be given that opportunity. If the loss of parking resutls in a loss of business, that will show up very quickly. I suspect the idea of a parklet may results in seasonal usage in many cities but I like the idea of letting shop owners decide. If they suffer as a result, at least they are not so large as to expect a bailout.
Seems like they're trying to make it impossible for commuters to shop or dine, or even work, in Boston any longer. If you can't find a place to park your car, because they turned it into a "parklet", you WILL go somewhere that you can park it and avoid the city altogether. The mayor is so anti-automobile that he'll do anything to make sure no one ever drives to his city. p.s. The 8000 parking metered spaces are NOT in the downtown area, they're in the outlying neighborhoods, like the medical districts and school areas.
With "the city will partner with local business owners to help with the cost." Generally a business would have no right to do anything with the street parking, this is more in the line of allowing the business to do it, and the city coordinating and helping them with costs, though not paying 100%. And who says they can't make them seasonal, remove the outdoor dining in winter to make snowplow clearance.
what will they do, do you suppose, when the cutsie little tables, chairs, and umbrella's are covered with snow . . . and then some putz with a plow comes and BURYs it completely . . . and mr/ms shop owner has to shovel his sidewalk - then where will the snow go? Of course, if some person who has to actually DRIVE to the location should come by for some foo-foo coffee or bran-laxitive muffins, they will have to return to whence they came since . . . there's no parking! This might work well in the People's Democratic Republic of San Fran, the home of the original fruits and nuts, but there is no room for it in a four season city where people actually work and live. You thought Parking Wars was bad before; this will bring about the return of the Combat Zone . . . all over the metro area. Interesting idea; not well researched or thought out - kinda like the Big Dig.
The state passed a law a few years ago that makes all property owners responsible for the public space in front of their properties. The most heavily fined for not clearing sidewalks in 2010 and 2011? The poor, the elderly.and small businesses.