Seats made out of colourful tyres showed pedestrians what they can do when they are tired of their cars / photo: mnd.gov.sg - courtesy of Sherry Berg

Fourth Park(ing) Day in Singapore to be held on 16 September 2016

The Park(ing) Day event is taking place again in Singapore on Friday (16 September) for the fourth time.

Park(ing) Day is an annual worldwide event where Parking lots are transformed into temporary miscellaneous public spaces. The first project began in 2005 when a single metered Parking space in downtown San Francisco converted into a temporary public Park by Rebar, a San Francisco Art and Design studio. Since then the Park(ing) Day has evolved into a global movement, organizations and individuals, operating independently of Rebar but following the established set of guidelines, create new forms of temporary public space in urban areas.

The first Park(ing) Day in Singapore was planned and organised in 2013 by a group of students and faculty from Singapore University of Technology and Design  (SUTD), design professionals from Participate in Design (P!D) and ReallyArchitecture (ACT), along with community members. It was a side event of Archifest 2013 organized by Shophouse & Co; together, they created a ‘Green Park(ing)’ in MacPherson Estate to improve pedestrian safety.

The Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) announced in its Tuesday (13 September) press release that this year’s Park(ing) day event will have events that range from a spa to a coffee booth, and will also feature a walk and cycle activity on a redesigned Tiong Bahru street. Apart from URA, this event is also supported by Housing Development Board (HDB).

Just last year, the number of parks grew to 70 all over the island with more than 50 community groups, ranging from local businesses to students and individuals, took part in the events.

URA stated that there will be 78 spaces this year, mostly located in the Central Business District in areas such as Telok Ayer, Bukit Pasoh, Jalan Besar, Bugis and Kampong Glam – and some in heartland locations such as Sembawang and Tiong Bahru, which the public can visit on Friday.

PARK(ing) Day 2016 is expected to see the largest participation from schools, with students from LASELLE College of the Arts, School of the Arts, Nanyang Polytechnic, Republic Polytechnic, and SUTD. The students from the education institutions are tasked to create and organizing 19 of the spaces.

To view more information about the Park(ing) Day event this year, visit URA’s website here.