With the help of lots and lots of people, we will be taking over two parking spaces in front of Tito’s Burritos on South Orange Ave in South Orange, NJ this year. The installation of our mini-parks (often called parklets) will start around 9am and should be open for business…or actually, relaxing, non-business by 11am on Sept 16th, 2016. We are doing on that date because nearly 1000 other towns will be doing the same thing on that day as part of Park(ing) Day. It’s really exciting to have the chance to create a gathering spot in a part of South Orange that would really benefit from a little green space. It’s also really exciting to transform an area that’s usually super car-centric into outdoor space for people.
Success is a Process
I tried to build a parklet in South Orange last year for Park(ing) Day, but we didn’t have enough time to make it happen. Last year, I gave myself 2 weeks to pull everything together…and that’s just not enough time. So this year, I started in April to give myself plenty of time.
There’s lots of people I had to talk to and lots of authorities I had to get permission to do it. Plus, there was the design for the parklet, raising a little money to buy stuff for the design and finding the best partners to get everybody to know it is happening.
The original design was a little ambitious and was a little too expensive. Below are some renderings I made of it.
Now, however, a full team of community members, local businesses and orgs are making Park(ing) Day a reality this year. The parklet is officially a South Orange Environmental Commission event. My company, chambersdesign, along with Tito’s Burritos are local business partners. South Orange Village Center Alliance is helping spread the word, and of course, this wouldn’t be possible without the blessing of the South Orange Parking Authority. We are hooking on with The Maplewood/South Orange Advertising, Media, Entertainment Network (AMEN) to have a happy hour (or something like a happy hour) at the parklet the evening of Park(ing) Day.
We will be taking over 2 parking spaces in front of Tito’s Burritos at 6 W. South Orange Ave, in South Orange, NJ on Sept 16, 2016. The parklet should be fully installed by 11am that morning and will be the “IT” place to be the entire day. The parklet will have seating as well as grass for you to hang out and see how a little bit of green space would transform the feel and community of South Orange.
Plans are still being developed for the evening activities. I’ll be updating everyone about the happenings and going-ons as they are solidified.
If you are interested in volunteering to help install the parklet, want more info before I get around to blogging about it, or want to donate to the cause, feel free to email me at neil (at) chambersdesign (dot) net, or go to the contact page of this website.
I’ll post images of the final parklet design as they are completed.