Earlier this year, ULI North Florida applied for an Urban Innovation Grant through the ULI Foundation to bring parklets to life in downtown Jacksonville in collaboration with Downtown Vision, Inc. (DVI).
By definition, a parklet is an extension of the sidewalk. It can be installed into several parking spaces along a sidewalk for a mini urban park. Parklets are popping up in many urban cities to increase foot traffic, offer amenities such as seating and bike racks and encourage outdoor activities.
The first public parklet was created in San Francisco in 2010 and since then, many other cities including Charlotte, Phoenix, Philadelphia, San Jose, Dallas and Seattle have followed suit with their own parklet programs. Parklets typically have umbrellas, seating, tables and bike racks characterized by art, greenery and innovative design. Not only do parklets offer amenities to locals, they also increase the vibrancy of the community and urban culture.
By September 2016, a Parklet Manual will be available to walk business owners interested in building a parklet, through the process.
DVI is implementing the project in downtown Jacksonville with ULI North Florida, the Downtown Investment Authority (DIA), Windmill Consulting and the City of Jacksonville.