San Diego’s First Parklet Comes to North Park

Parklets are coming to San Diego’s North Park Main Street district, but what is a Parklet? Parklets are the temporary use of space that are dedicated for the public’s use in the form of benches, tables, greenery and otherwise transforming public spaces such as parking spaces, unused bus stops, and other types of vehicular zones.

In larger cities, such as San Francisco, New York City, and Los Angeles, Parklets are already commonplace and add more space for pedestrians, café patrons, and boutique shoppers alike to bask in and enjoy more of the outdoor space. Click to check out some sample parklets.

This new demonstration program, which was spearheaded by North Park Main Street staff Angela Landsberg and Kevin Clark and supported unanimously by the North Park Planning Committee, will give the City of San Diego the opportunity to assess firsthand the social and economic benefits that are accrued from sidewalk extension infrastructure. There will be pre-installation surveys and post-installation surveys conducted at the Parklet locations.

San Diego’s first Parklet will take up two parking spaces in front of Caffé Calabria, and will provide a place for the public to take a break from the bleak asphalt of the city.

San Diego's first parklet comes to North Park

A 3-D rendering of North Park’s new parklet

It’s being designed by local architect, Christopher Bittner, who has invested his time and eye for detail for San Diego’s first Parklet.  Bittner, who was recently named 2012 Alumnus of the Year at New School of Architecture and Design (NSAD), has been involved in many local projects.

According to the NSAD, Bittner has served as a volunteer board member with North Park Main Street since October 2010. His firm, obrARCHITECTURE, was an active participant in the development of the Sustainable North Park Main Street master plan, and Bittner owns and operates an art gallery in North Park that supports local artists. About 70 percent of his architecture and design projects are for local nonprofit organizations.