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Oct 9, 2015 12:38 PM ET

Archived: Wray Ave Solar Parklet: turns a small section of unused road space into community space

iCrowdNewswire - Oct 9, 2015

Wray Ave Solar Parklet

A parklet is a small incremental change to modify the street in a way that says you are welcome here. It’s a winning solution to resurrect little dead spaces into social rest stops.

The Wray Ave Solar Parklet turns a small section of unused road space into community space, through providing permanent seating, plants and solar power to charge personal devices and light the dark at night. The park transforms unused space into community space, providing a place to meet friends, watch the world go by or to rest on your way elsewhere. The sustainable solar parklet will be build using reclaimed materials by local crafts people. It is carefully designed to enhance local identity and community interaction by providing a place to meet and linger. Stay awhile!

So what is it? A parklet is basically a cleverly designed sidewalk rest stop with seating and plants and other amenities that may not be provided yet. In this design on Wray Ave the parklet will have solar lighting and power along with permanent seating and plants.  

Urban planners define it as a sidewalk extension that provides more space and amenities for people using the street in places where either current urban parks are lacking or where the existing sidewalk width is not large enough to accommodate vibrant street life activities. We say it’s a place to hang out, a place to stopsit down with your dog, and chill while taking in the activities of the street, meet a friend, or listen to that cool local jazz band that popups from time to time and not have to buy anything! That’s right. Even though the idea is to be near local businesses so you don’t have to go too far to get that awesome coffee or buy that present for a friend, it’s a public space and its free of obligation.

This parklet will take up a motorcycle bay and part of the end of pedestrian crossing (see photo) on the road creating a park that is flush with the sidewalk. This area is a local community hub, with a number of local shops and cafes, en route to downtown Fremantle. The location is perfect for both those using the local hub or moving through on their way to town. The area is congested and dark with a lack of both parks and street lighting. This parklet hopes to rectify both these issues, providing lighting at night and a small respite place.


Testing the idea – Park(ing) Day, 2015

The before! Wray Ave Solar Parklet setting up a temporary parklet as part of Park(ing) Day 2015, City of Fremantle

To test this idea and the design we participated in Park(ing) Day 2015 with the City of Fremantle. The temporary parklet was a huge success (see photos). Feedback was overwhelming supportive, with people asking for the space to be made permanent now! The park was used throughout the day by many different people, particularly families with small children who loved the space to play in an otherwise crowded street.

The ABC news (Australian Broadcasting Corporation) covered the day, both in the television news and in the print.

See the news report here – http://www.abc.net.au/news/2015-09-18/pop-up-parks-catch-on-in-perth/6788094

Watch the video here – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZWNnWiKrikk&feature=youtu.be

Wray Ave Solar Parklet Participating In Park(ing) Day 2015, City of Fremantle

 The Design

The parklet is being carefully designed to reflect local character of the area by local craftspeople. The design is aimed at creating a welcoming and comfortable space.  

It is being designed following the OnePlanet Living principles of – 

Health and happiness – Through providing a public community space, the parklet aims to encourage sociability and promote local identity, activity and well-being.

Sustainable materials – The parklet will be constructed through reclaimed wood supported by a galvanized steel frame from scrap metal. Reclaimed and repurposed materials will be prefaced where possible along with local suppliers. All of the crafts people are local.

Zero Carbon – The parklet will be powered through solar power and will provide solar power outlets for use by the public.

A number of potential community and sustainability impacts have been identified:

– The design and construction utilizes local businesses, providing employment for local crafts people.

– The parklet is designed to support local businesses by enhancing them with increased pedestrian activity. Giving customers reasons to linger and hang out near by. A study in San Francisco by the Great Streets Project in 2012 saw increases in foot traffic and business revenue where parklets where installed. People buy more when they have a reason to hang out!

– The parklet will comprise largely of reclaimed and recycled materials, which is great for the environment, and value for money!

– The parklet provides extra public space in an already congested area. Wray Ave is busy! And this parklet does not take away a car bay. It is designed to fill a dead space between a cross walk nub and a driveway where only 2 motorcycles can park.

– The idea is scalable to other locations in context specific solutions. Fundamental designs can easily be implemented in other locations of Fremantle and then designed to incorporate and reflect the character of that area.

Please see the designs below

Wray Ave Solar Parklet Designs in Planning

Wray Ave Solar Parklet Plans

 Please share and follow our project at @WASolarParklet


Tipping Point Goal: $28,000

Total Funding Goal: $30,000

All of the funds raised will be used to plan, design, build and construct the parklet. The materials needed include reclaimed Jarrah wood, galvanised steel, plants, solar panels, power outlets and storage batteries. Once we have raised half the funds the City of Fremantle will match the remaining funds. All of the donations will be used to built this parklet, plus 3 years of maintenance.

The budget is as follows.

Expenditure Item and cost:

Design and architectural plans -$400

Construction materials – $5500

Labor costs – $5500

Carbon footprint assessment fees – $2000

Solar applications and installation – $5300

Plants and horticultural designs – $1500

Maintenance (on-going maintenance in seperate fund) – $5000

Management/Adminstration/website/logo/advertising – $3000

Inkind contributions – $3500

Total cost – $28200


Once we raise the first $14,000 the City of Fremantle will match $14,000!

All of the funds raised go straight into covering the basic costs of this project. 

We need to raise funds slightly above the tipping point to cover SSG fees and payment processors (Paypal) also. Every bit helps!


Contact Information:

Wray Ave Solar Parklet

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