Some of you may have heard about Rebar Collective's PARK(ing) project, in which a group of San Franciscans turned a parking space into a tiny urban park in one metered spot on an SF street.
Now we learn about P(LOT) by Michael Rakowitz.
"P(LOT) questions the occupation and dedication of public space and encourages reconsiderations of "legitimate" participation in city life. Contrary to the common procedure of using municipal parking spaces as storage surfaces for vehicles, P (LOT) proposes the rental of these parcels of land for alternative purposes. The acquisition of municipal permits and simple payment of parking meters could enable citizens to, for example, establish temporary encampments or use the leased ground for different kinds of activities."
Revising the standard idea of "car camping," the P(LOT) designers have created tents out of car covers, which can be rented and erected in parking spaces (they're a perfect fit). Of course, there's no guarantee that you'll fool anyone into thinking there's actually a car underneath the cover, which could lead to strange encounters with the metermaid.
Um, wintermane, what the heck do you mean?
Oh, it is terrific!
Fortunately, I'll be able to building a home for my four cats near my preferred park.
I hope they won't be so damaged because of the smoke from neighbours cars.
Well excuse me if I misunderstand but your taking about taking up a parking space by camping it so you have that space for you. Thats rude. A bunch of people did that near a univercity my sister went to they would keep a car in certain spots 24/7 or put some large item in the spot to make sure THEY had a spot.. the result being there were no open spots.
What realy got me was people doing this who had a freaking garrage!
I think wintermane is missing the point. This isn't about saving a parking space so you can park your car there later. This whole movement is about using public space for something other than cars, to cut down on asphalt and dependency on cars. I think Rebar did it better - creating parks and bicycle parking, but this is still making the same sort of statement. A lot of urban space is lost to the polution causing car.
This is stupid, and so was the whole PARK(ing) thing. I totally support the movement to help save the environment, or whatever. I do my part, believe me, I DO MY PART. But taking public space that has been sanctioned for the parking of cars and using it for your own idealistic selfish goals is absurd. You so brilliantly state that the point is "to cut down on asphalt and the dependency of cars" yet you don't seem to realize that the asphalt is already there! You can't cut down on it now, it already occupies that space. Second, we have cars. If you and your wonder-buddies take up all the parking spaces with parks and tents, where the hell are the people with cars supposed to park? I have an idea, let's park them in your parks and tents. This is the type of action that gives environmentalists - people who actually do care about the environment - a bad name. Thank you for being so self centered.
Whew! Well, glad to see this got people so riled up! I must say, I don't think that this is what gives environmentalists a bad name. We are not suddenly going to start seeing tents and parks in parking spaces everywhere and lose the space for our cars. It's as likely that a parking space would happen to be blocked by a delivery truck or roped off for construction for an afternoon as that some artist's intervention-of-public-space project would take up that property. It's to make a point. It's a creative protest against a system. It will not mean you have a harder time finding a parking space. But it seems to me that expressing opposition in more conventional ways often fails to make a point the way this does.