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Better Block Announces a New Spin on a Design Competition

In partnership with Spin, we are launching an open call for designers, urbanists, architects, citizens and anyone who cares about safe and livable streets, to design and build an on-street, life-size parklet prototype that blends the traditional parklet concept, bike corral, and bus shelter with scooter parking and placemaking. Winning projects will be rolled out in Denver, Colorado, on National Park(ing) Day, September 20, 2019.

The challenge is simple: take creative design, a love of bikes and scooters, and combine them to reclaim streets for people, not cars. We are inviting budding urban designers from across the country to bring a new generation of parklets to American streets. We’re looking for architects, makers, creatives, artists, woodworkers, students, seasoned professionals, and/or hobbyists to submit their designs for a chance to make it to the next round. Five finalist teams will receive $1,500 for materials for their designs from Spin (plus the ability to fundraise an additional $1,500) plus a travel stipend of $1,500 for their team to travel to Denver to showcase their design during Park(ing) Day.

Applications are due July 19, 2019. To learn more about the application process and next steps, visit here.

“We love parklets and think they have huge value in making better use of precious street space than just storing private vehicles: streets with parklets are simply safer, more enjoyable, and more useful. But we wanted to take things to the next level, not only to see if we could be a part of this movement to create more spaces for people in our cities, but also help cities manage parking for scooters, bikes, and other light electric and human-powered vehicles,” said Beaudry Kock, Head of Policy Initiatives at Spin. “Scooters and bikes are here to stay, providing fun, clean and safe ways of getting around; however, when these vehicles are not in use, we want to do our part to help make sure they’re safely and efficiently parked.”

The Better Block Foundation has implemented similar design projects in the past including challenges to build better pavilions, pop-up retail kiosks, and bus stops. All projects use creative design and digital fabrication to assemble a structure that can enhance a place in the community.

“We love working with creatives to reimagine spaces for people,” says Better Block Foundation’s Director Jason Roberts. “This is an awesome opportunity to bring together designers to rethink the built environment and embrace multi-modal transportation.”


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