Katrina Rogus is a Landscape Architect at SALT
The end of summer has seemed to settle over Philadelphia over the last couple of weeks. The humidity has dissipated, gardens are full of juicy tomatoes, and students of all ages are getting ready for school again. The end of summer brings one more great thing to our city: PARK(ING) DAY.
2017 marks the 10th anniversary of Parking Day in Philadelphia. It’s also the first year that SALT Design Studio is participating, along with the first year that I am participating since I’ve been out in the professional world. The idea of Parking Day was started in 2005 in San Francisco by Rebar, an art and design firm, and it’s been growing in the U.S. and all over the world for the last 12 years. The original concept of Parking Day was to acknowledge the need for green spaces in urban environments by transforming on-street parking spots into mini parks, or parklets.
Since 2005, Parking Day has been evolving in both thought and execution. Although the original message of increased green space in cities is still an important one, I think Parking Day carries other important messages. These include: decreasing the importance of cars in our cities, increasing the amount of public space in our cities, and promoting conversation and collaboration among people, professions, and organizations of all types.
This year, SALT is teaming up with three other organizations – Recyclebank, The Post-Landfill Action Network (PLAN), and City CoHo Philly’s Nexus – to create a collaborative parklet. Our collective goal is to educate the passersby about the sustainable initiatives that we each represent. SALT’s message will focus on green stormwater infrastructure, increasing plants in urban environments, and repurposing materials that would otherwise go to landfills. Recyclebank’s message will focus on properly recycling materials and how recycling can benefit you, your community, and your local landfill. PLAN's message will focus on empowering college and university aged students to start Zero Waste initiatives on their campus, from composting in dorms and dining halls, to closing the loop on campus with student-run thrift stores. Last but not least, City CoHo’s message will focus on co-working and collaborating, which can reduce energy and infrastructure needs by bringing people together under one roof. City CoHo is the big umbrella that SALT, Recyclebank, and PLAN all fall under; it’s how we all met and why we’re all coming together to promote one large idea of sustainability to the people of Philadelphia.
Now the fun begins: the building, the painting, the planting, and the park-ing! Follow us on social media to watch our progress and see day-of photos and videos. And be sure to look for our team and come say hi on Friday, September 15th on the 1900 block of Chestnut Street, park-ed right across from the mini-Target.
Who: SALT Design Studio | Recyclebank | PLAN | City CoHo
What: PARK(ing) Day Philadelphia| www.parkingdayphila.org | #PARKingDayPHL
Where: 1900 Block of Chestnut Street (across from Target)
When: All Day - Friday, September 15, 2017