New Kind of “Office Park” in San Francisco
San Francisco, CA: The Trust for Public Land (TPL) invites you into 200 square feet of lean green outdoor office space next Friday. TPL will transform a parking space at New Montgomery and Mission into an outdoor office to encourage downtown employees to get out and get busy. The space will be equipped with wireless internet access so that workers can catch some sun without sacrificing productivity.
Cities across America will gain new green space on National Park(ing) Day, September 21, as parking spots nationwide are transformed into public parks. The goal is to generate excitement about urban parks and open space.
Supporters in more than twenty cities, including New York, Boston, Chicago, Minneapolis, Washington D.C, Seattle, San Francisco, and Los Angeles have announced participation. Organizers are also inviting local groups to participate, expanding the opportunity from one park to a system of park(ing) parks. Details online at www.tpl.org/parkingday.
In addition to the temporary outdoor office, TPL is busy creating permanent parks in underserved neighborhoods throughout the Bay Area. In August, TPL hosted an opening celebration for the newly renovated playground at Potrero Hill Park. They also broke ground on the community garden in the Visitacion Valley Greenway. The new community garden will be ADA accessible, and will provide space for neighbors to grow flowers, fruits, and vegetables.
“Parks don’t just make our cities more livable, they also bring people together,” said Tim Wirth, Bay Area Program Director for The Trust for Public Land. “Our outdoor office on Park(ing) Day is about connections. Not just connecting to the internet, but also connecting to nature, and connecting with each other. It’s about getting out of our individual homes and offices and coming together as a community.”
TPL is sponsoring National Park(ing) Day 2007, a concept created by San Francisco art collective Rebar (www.rebargroup.org). In 2005, Rebar created its first “PARK(ing)” project by transforming a metered parking spot into a temporary public park, briefly expanding the public realm and improving the quality of urban human habitat (at least until the meter ran out).
“Our goal was to encourage people to rethink the way our streets are used, and to temporarily expand the amount of public open space in an underserved area of downtown San Francisco,” says John Bela, co-founder of Rebar. “We added ‘24,000 square foot-minutes’ of public open space that afternoon.”
San Francisco will have nearly 30 parks on Park(ing) Day, including a literary park, urban forest, city croquet course, and community garden. Public Architecture is creating plazas along Folsom Street in anticipation of their upcoming pedestrian-centric redesign project.
The Trust for Public Land (TPL) is a national, nonprofit, land conservation organization that conserves land for people to enjoy as parks, community gardens, historic sites, rural lands, and other natural places, ensuring livable communities for generations to come. Since 1972, TPL has protected more than two million acres nationwide. TPL depends on the support of individuals, corporations, and foundations.