Park(ing) Day Scenes From Around the United States

It was only eight years ago that the international movement known as Park(ing) Day got started (in San Francisco or New York, depending on whom you ask). In a short time, this fun way to demonstrate the squandered potential of ordinary parking spaces has become a global phenomenon.

Today, in cities across the United States and around the world, people are using parking spaces to express aspirations for their cities. We’ve compiled some images of their work — from Muncie, Indiana, to Berkeley, California. I think these demonstrations offer a pretty powerful message about the demand for more livable cities. Check it out:

Here’s Atlanta, via ATLUrbanist:

Dallas, via Patrick McDonnell:

Pittsburgh, via Bike Pittsburgh:

Hartford, Connecticut, via Hartford Has It:

Portland, Oregon, via JF Schmidt and Son Co.

Oklahoma City, via Meg Sayler:

Muncie, Indiana, via Lohren Deeg:

Milwaukee, Wisconsin, via Art Milwaukee:

St. Louis, via St. Louis Treasurer:

Berkeley, California, via MIG News:

Cleveland, Ohio, via BuckBuckCLE:

Philadelphia, via Eviama Life Spa:

West Palm Beach, Florida, via @walkableWPB:

Richmond, Virginia, via Andy Boenau:

New Brunswick, New Jersey, via Jonathan Hawkins:

There are so many Park(ing) Day spots we could only feature a few. According to Park(ing) Day organizers, 162 cities in 53 countries have reported they’re participating, but there are likely more. Kudos to the hundreds of people around the world who made this happen!

  • Danny G

    In my book (which admittedly, may not be the highest reading level) the Dallas swing spot wins the prize.

  • I was gonna say the same thing. But part of it is the perfectness of the photo.

  • I was gonna say the same thing. But part of it is the perfectness of the photo.

  • I was gonna say the same thing. But part of it is the perfectness of the photo.

  • Ben Kintisch

    What a great variety of cities and interesting setups. I like the circle of chairs with books for austere elegance….though the potted trees were pretty sweet, too.

  • I gave painting lessons on the Grand concourse. The BLK project’s Bus stopped by too. I don’t have a lot of photos but I think TransAlt might have some.

  • The idea behind the painting is to create a landscape through the eyes of the community, where everyone adds bits and pieces of the neighborhood as they see it. Here is one result, it’s almost complete.

  • APAUNMStudentRep

    Albuquerque had a great Parking Day led by UNM’s ASLA, CityLab and APA UNM! We had a few spots that were filled with shade, drawing classes, games and yoga. Can’t wait for next year!

  • Montefiore Park NYC
    MONTEFIORE PARK in upper Manhattan, NYC had a site again, WHAT A BLAST!! this event rocks!

  • Anonymous

    Previous year’s Park(ing) Day events inspired our mayor to make his City Hall parking spot a “parklet” which ended up making national news.

  • Hart Noecker

    What had started out as simply trying to do things ‘bigger and better’ had evolved into an experiment beyond the intentions of the organizers. At first many were hesitant, stating they either thought it part of a private event, a commercial promotion of sorts, or worried sitting in the street wasn’t that safe. Yet as more and more people sat to read, drink coffee, converse, and make new friends, it was as though a spell had been broken. Gradually, hundreds of Portlanders began connecting with one another in ways that were totally familiar – yet hadn’t been practiced in a long time, at least nowhere near this block.

  • Kerri Provost

    Hartford finally got with the program and joined in:

  • Anonymous

    Hart, Portland’s Park(ing) day looked like Occupy Portland re-imagined by Crate and Barrel. The area around the Ace Hotel where the event took place has hundreds of Latino service workers, none of whom appear in any pictures. How refreshing that white people continue to dominate the use of the built environment, and have time to relax on space used by commercial vehicles.

  • Hart Noecker

    I only *wish* it had looked more like Occupy. Had you actually been there instead of simply judging what you saw in photos, you’d have seen many people of color and other working class folk stopping by while shopping or on a work break.

  • Anonymous

    Sounds like denial to me. Find me one picture with a non-white person and I will apologize.

  • Hart Noecker

    You’re hilarious. And blind, apparently.


Park(ing) Day Scenes From Coast to Coast

Today is a very fun day in cities around the U.S., when advocates for better public spaces unleash their imaginations on the dreary places where we normally store cars. Park(ing) Day is “an annual worldwide event where artists, designers and citizens transform metered parking spots into temporary public parks,” according to its organizers. Below we are showcasing […]

Parking Craters Aren’t Just Ugly, They’re a Cancer on Your City’s Downtown

Streetsblog’s Parking Madness competition has highlighted the blight that results when large surface parking lots take over a city’s downtown. Even though Rochester, winner of 2014’s Golden Crater, certainly gains bragging rights, all of the competitors have something to worry about: Cumulatively, the past 50 years of building parking have had a debilitating effect on America’s downtowns. […]

Park(ing) Day 2013: DC Edition

There’s only one reason to be inside on a beautiful day like today, and that is to upload pictures of this beautiful day. More to the point, it’s Park(ing) Day, a celebration of better uses for on-street parking spaces. All over this city, and in cities around the country, temporary parklets have sprung up in […]

Parking Madness Elite Eight: Dallas vs. Muncie

We’re down to six remaining contenders in this year’s Parking Madness tournament after the grey expanse of Niagara Falls, New York, blew out the competition from Rutland, Vermont, claiming the second slot in the Final Four. Today’s pairing: a Texas-sized disaster and a Midwestern moonscape. Only one will advance. Dallas Dallas’s Fair Park is a 275-acre complex near downtown that is home to the state […]

Why Ferguson Protests Spilled Onto Highways

Protests following a Missouri grand jury’s failure to indict Officer Darren Wilson for shooting and killing Michael Brown spilled out onto highways in several American cities on Monday evening and Tuesday. Protesters occupied freeways in Los Angeles, Seattle, Oakland, Milwaukee, Atlanta, St. Louis, Cleveland, New York, Philadelphia, and Chicago. (One reported incident of road rage at […]