August 13, 2012 at 1:02pm
Downtown Olympia’s first parklet is under construction.
In front of Darby’s café, a crew has worked for two days laying the foundation for the space.
An interview with Brian Wilson, city liaison, clues us in on the project.
“I'd love to see a downtown full of parklets,” he says. “They provide a lighter, quicker, cheaper solution to placemaking.”
There are currently two parklets planned for downtown Olympia (one in front of Darby's and the other in front of Jake's). These parklets were made possible by a matching grant from the Parking & Business Improvement Area (PBIA).
Both parklets will have unique features.
“Darby's tried to use as many reclaimed materials as possible,” says Wilson, “They are using old paver bricks that were previously in downtown alleyways, refinished church pews and recycled sails for the awning. There will also be covered bike parking and a community herb garden. The parklet at Jake's will have a more modern feel. Rob Cameron (the owner) plans on using decking material that will include plenty of bench seating. There will also be a number of tree and flower planters. It will bring color to a block that faces a variety of challenges at the moment.”
Wilson says the idea came from San Francisco, a city teeming with urban creativity.
“It's an idea that is sweeping the country through the efforts of the non-profit organization Project for Public Spaces.”
Darby’s parklet should be usable by the end of the week, and completed within two.
Darby's is located at 211 5th Ave Se.
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