Parklets of San Francisco

April 29, 2015 11 comments Open printer friendly version of this article Print Article

San Francisco-born urban planning tool offers inexpensive model to promote vibrant pedestrian environments and support local businesses in downtown Jacksonville.

Parklets first appeared in San Francisco and have grown to become a worldwide phenomenon in just five short years. Parklets are essentially extensions of the sidewalk that reclaim on-street parking spaces. These spaces create centers of pedestrian activity in areas that lack urban parks or where the existing sidewalk width is not large enough to accommodate vibrant street life activities.

After installing the first parklet in 2010, San Francisco established a groundbreaking program called “Pavement To Parks”, a collaboration between the San Francisco Planning Department, the Department of Public Works and the Municipal Transportation Agency. The program established design standards and encouraged public and private participation to reimagine the potential of city streets, enhance pedestrian safety and interaction, foster neighborhood interaction and support local businesses by quickly and inexpensively converting underused public right-of-way into new pedestrian spaces.

This program was important as it established legal pathways for public and private parties to collaborate in creating vibrant pedestrian places. The San Francisco Parklet Manual has been published to provide a comprehensive overview of the goals, policies, process, procedures and guidelines for creating a parklet in San Francisco. The Manual also serves as a resource for those outside of San Francisco working to establish parklet programs in their own cities.

Download a copy of this manual here:

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