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Park(ing) Day Transforms Parking Spaces For People Spaces

In September 2005, San Francisco urban designer John Bela and his co-workers took an ordinary parking spot and installed the first “parklet.”  They rolled living grass on top of the concrete, put up a bench and placed a potted tree.  Within a few minutes, Bela observed a man enter the mini park, sit down on the bench, and begin to eat lunch.

Park(ing) Day was born.

Now held every year on the third Friday of September, Park(ing) Day has grown into a global event that encourages businesses, community groups and other organizations to reimagine on-street parking spaces as vibrant, people-friendly places.

On September 20, DPW and representatives from Denver City Council transformed three downtown parking spaces at 15th Street & Court Place into outdoor meeting spaces and areas to inform passersby about city programs and services.  It was a huge success.

In a 2017 City Lab interview, Bela stated that Park(ing) Day is “an opportunity for social interaction that wasn’t there before.  It was about demonstrating an alternative to storing cars in parking spaces.”

You can find more information about Denver’s parklet program and learn how to prepare for next year’s event and obtain a permit to reserve a parking space at

Denver Public Works employees have a meeting in a parklet to celebrate Parking Day 

DPW employees celebrated Parking Day be converting on-street parking spaces into meeting spaces