Park(ing) Day Fun
Parking spaces throughout Albany were taken over and temporarily transformed into public spaces on September 18. The event was part of PARK(ing) Day, an annual, worldwide event at which artists, activists, and citizens independently, yet simultaneously, turn metered parking spots into “PARK(ing)” spaces—that is, temporary public parks and other spaces for people to enjoy.
The mission of PARK(ing) Day is to call attention to the need for urban open space, to generate critical debate around how public areas are created and allocated, and to improve the quality of urban human habitat…at least until the meter runs out!
In Albany, more than 20 parking spots were converted into public spaces by 11 organizations and local businesses. The event is co-sponsored by Parks & Trails New York (PTNY), the City of Albany’s Department of Development and Planning, and Albany Center Gallery.
PTNY transformed multiple parking spaces on Washington Avenue near the Capitol, converting them temporarily into a segment of the Erie Canalway Trail leading into a public campground complete with greenery, tent, camping chairs, camp stove, marshmallows and a game of corn hole. A protected bike lane, created by Albany Bicycle Coalition, connected to the spaces.
“Parks, trails and other open spaces are critical to the health and well-being of all New Yorkers in all communities,” said PTNY Executive Director Robin Dropkin. “PARK(ing) Day is an excellent way to remind ourselves of the importance of having natural areas that are accessible to everyone.”