Call to Action — REBAR opened eyes worldwide by temporarily transforming a metered parking spot into a PARK. They reclaim the street…until the meter ran out.

(Update: also check the results of PARK(ing) Day in the other Inspiring Cities article).

Parking Day, REBAR, San Francisco

They challenge you too. REBAR, with support from The Trust for Public Land (TPL) wants you, the most creative minds in San Francisco, to create the most innovative PARK in a parking spot. You can join them as they transform parking spots into PARK(ing) spaces: temporary public parks in areas that need open space – enlivening the streets and improving the quality of urban human habitat. REBAR is seeking volunteers to help them carry out a series of PARK(ing) installations throughout the city of San Francisco.

PARK(ing) Day is September 21, 2006

Anyone can join PARK(ing) Day by transforming a parking spot into a PARK(ing) space on Thursday, September 21st, 2006. Beneath, you will find the Manual.

Parking Day, REBAR, San Francisco   Parking Day, REBAR, San Francisco

General Event Guidelines

  • PARK(ing) projects will provide some form of nature or greenery, seating, and options for enjoying sun or shade in a 8 x 20 ft (6 x 2.4 m) metered parking spot.
  • Participants will select parking spots that are in accessible, preferably sunny, locations that receive regular foot traffic.
  • Participants will select parking spots in underserved and/or marginalized areas lacking open space.
  • Participants must feed the meter for the duration of the installation.
  • Participants must provide a feature that defines the edge of the PARK and protects PARK visitors from traffic.
  • Participants will post signs indicating the PARK is open to the public.
  • Participants will leave the installation site cleaner than they found it (leave no trace) and recycle, reuse, or donate all materials used for the event.
  • Participants must coply with all local, state and federal laws.
  • Participants will not intentionally cause conflict with vehicle owners, city staff, or police and will direct those seeking to park an automobile to a nearby area with ample parking, as identified by project participants.

Parking Day, REBAR, San Francisco

Mission

As many as 2 in 3 people in America’s largest cities lack convenient access to a park, playground, or other natural place. Parks and public spaces are critical for our health, recreation, relaxation, and quality of life. Parks revitalize neighbourhoods and bring people together.
More than 70% of many cities’ downtown outdoor space is dedicated to the private vehicle, while only a fraction of that space is allocated to the public realm. Streets are by far the largest component of publicly-owned space in a city, yet they are given over almost exclusively to vehicle movement and parking spots.

A parking spot is essentially a short term lease. Feeding a parking meter enables one to rent precious urban real estate for as little as a dollar an hour. By transforming parking spots into PARK(ing) spaces we can temporarily expand the public realm and improve the quality of urban human habitat… until the meter runs out!

The goal of PARK(ing) Day is to reprogram the urban surface by reclaiming streets for people to rest, relax, and play, and to:

  • Promote a critical dialogue among artists, designers, activists, citizens, corporations, and government regarding the need for urban open space and they way in which streets are currently used.
  • Energize civic life by questioning basic assumptions about urban space while offering provocative and meaningful alternatives.
  • Connect artists, designers, and activists with ways to permanently reclaim the street for people.

Parking Day, REBAR, San Francisco   Parking Day, REBAR, San Francisco

About REBAR

REBAR is a San Francisco-based art collective. Much like a DJ samples recorded sounds, REBAR appropriates elements of the physical/cultural world and remixes them into novel contexts. By “remixing the landscape” in this way, the group exposes new meanings and alters assumptions about our shared environment. REBAR projects engage social, ecological, and cultural processes as they unfold materially in space and time. While the group’s work can be used or interpreted as playful, ridiculous, or absurd, it is also highly functional. REBAR remixes the ordinary, repurposes the ubiquitous, and rebuilds with invisible structural material . . . much like rebar itself.

Parking Day, REBAR, San Francisco

Want to know more?

> The PARK(ing) website
> REBAR website
> The Trailer movie
> How to Manual
> BBC Documentary about PARK(ing)
Contact REBAR for more information: parkingday@rebargroup.org.

Click on image for Park(ing) video Parking Day, REBAR, San Francisco

Find many more examples of Guerrilla Tactics all over the world on Inspiring Cities.