Parklets are here!

Parklets are here!

Parklets are here!

Recently, the City initiated an effort in conjunction with the Downtown Improvement District, Chamber of Commerce, and Convention and Visitor’s Bureau to improve the sociability of our downtown. Due to the Center’s interest in creative placemaking in our downtown, we were invited to be part of the Promotions Group.

The Promotions Group focuses on marketing, special events, and public relations for the downtown area, focusing on making it look more inviting and appealing to the local citizens. While we have been contributing to the ongoing research about how the public uses the downtown area, we have also played a key part in the first transformation project.

Right outside of our windows, we can see the City taking its first steps towards re-imagining downtown Modesto by converting non-usable street corners into pedestrian friendly ‘parklets’. These are small urban parks created to provide a public place for citizens to relax and enjoy the atmosphere of the city around them.  Through the redistribution of city owned tree and flower planters, the addition of some decoupage painting techniques, and cafe tables and chairs, the city has in one weekend transformed the urban experience of 10th and J street.

The transformation was covered in two Modesto Bee articles, here and here.

And the Building Imagination Center was right there to help.  Come out, enjoy a sandwich,  and enjoy this transformation firsthand.

The City redistributes it’s tree and flower planters to define the borders of the new parklets.

Using decoupage painting techniques to help redefine the use of the space.

Bistro tables and chairs welcome pedestrians to stop and sit.