Creating an alternative world, one parking spot at a time

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Temps de lecture : 2 minutes  

Une place pour un monde alternatif

Park(ing) Day à Reims © Marc Ducros

What if changing the world started from our own parking spot? Such was the crazy challenge set by the organisers and participants of Park(ing) Day. Launched in 2005 in San Francisco and now in thirty other countries worldwide, the movement has also gained several cities in France amongst which Paris, Marseille, Bordeaux and Amiens… The principle is easy : participants divert a parking spot located in a street and change its use by offering animations, showing artwork or creating debate areas. « It must be a driver for reflection on the role played by cars in town and how they are being used » explains Cécile Brazilier, from the organisation Dédale who relays Park(ing) Day in France and coordinates what she presents as « a movement of friendly civil disobedience. We are not necessarily against the usage of cars, but we must admit that they take up a lot of space in town particularly because of parking spaces ».

Each third weekend of September, Park(ing) Day participants settle on a parking spot and make it live in their own way. The movement is open to all. In 2005, at the foundation of the movement, Rebar, the collective of artists and landscape gardeners who first came up with the idea, had thus created miniature public gardens by bringing lawn and plants on the parking spaces of San Francisco – leading to the play on word park for park(ing). It is the occasion for artists to expose their art, for gardeners to convert parking slots into miniature gardens or for organisations promoting local and organic products to transform a parking space in a degustation stall. The street becomes a meeting space.

Everyone can dispose freely, on the Dédal’s website, of a registration form so as to let other know about of their action. The website also offers practical advice for everyone to set up and transform, for the day, a parking spot into a little-utopia.

In 2011, over 250 parking spots had been transformed for a day.

Park(ing) Day

Temps de lecture : 2 minutes  

Park(ing) Day

Park(ing)Day a été lancé en 2005 à San Francisco par le collectif artistique Rebar. Depuis, le mouvement a été repris dans 150 villes différentes dans une trentaine de pays. En 2012, il aura lieu les 21 et 22 septembre. Le rendez-vous parisien sera Place de la Bourse où des ateliers débats auront lieu afin de réfléchir à la manière de rendre plus humaine et agréable la ville. Il y aura aussi la présence de stands d’une dizaine d’associations.

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