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Shoehorned Parks

Cities are beginning to look past conventional methods of acquiring and creating parkland and turning to a cadre of different ways to create usable space. In an article for Landscape Architecture (pdf ), Peter Harnik looks at some of these methods, starting:

Are you regularly told that your city is “all built out” and has no room for new parks, even though there seem to be plenty of new high-rises, parking lots, and shopping malls? Is it perhaps time to start looking for new urban parkland in untraditional places? That is exactly what’s beginning to happen in densely packed cities.

Harnik goes on to provide examples of cemeteries being used as parks (as they were once intended), rooftops of public buildings, community gardens nestled into the urban fabric, covering reservoirs with parkland as has been done in Seattle, doubling stormwater features as park amenities, closing down park roadways and removing parking, as Pittsburgh did to create the great Schenley Plaza.

(The article is a snapshot of a longer book to be released by Island Press on the wider topic of planning for and finding parkland in cities, coming out next year.)

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