Evanston, Illinois / United States of America
Definition of a Parklet:
A parklet is a small space serving as an extension of the sidewalk to provide amenities and green space for people using the street. It is typically the size of several parking spaces. Parklets extend out from and level with the sidewalk to the width of the adjacent parking space.
The first Parklet in Evanston provides a public yet intimate space for passersby to relax, enjoy, and engage with the community and nature. Constructed of natural and organic materials—including cedar wood, a tree trunk, and plantings—the user feels protected from street traffic while facing the sidewalk and shops.
Exterior reclaimed corrugated metal siding wraps around the interior cedar wood seating like the protective shell of a tortoise. High back seating and vertical greenery cushion users further from the vehicular traffic.
Within this protective shell, three intimate seating areas give couples and small groups sanctuary from traffic and concrete. A tree trunk coffee table in the middle and plantings in each corner define the separate spaces. At the same time, the Parklet opens to a view of the community populating the sidewalk.
Also highly functional, these versatile seating areas can be accessed by wheelchairs and strollers. A bike rack on the outside of the eastern wall epitomizes the eco-lifestyle of Evanston, a progressive city with many dedicated bike lanes.
The new Parklet carves out an oasis in the urban environment and supports the green objectives of a community proud of its commitment to global ecology. As it encourages pedestrian and bike traffic, it decreases the need for the parking spaces it so beautifully transforms.
Architect of Record
240 Lee Street
Evanston, Illinois 60202
Scott Simpson Builders
1529 Shermer Road
Northbrook, Illinois 60062
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