Trading parking spaces for “parklets” is a good idea that likely will boost business, beautify streets and literally curb our auto addiction.
Whether a specific site is suitable for a parklet is a different question. It is good to hear that the City intends to hold community meetings about their design and placement in Mission Hill.
Parklets have sparked debate elsewhere. Despite the cute name, they’re actually “business-lets” that privatize the public streets into ersatz sidewalk cafés and make an end-run around licensing and permitting. Responsibility for them can be unclear and after-hours use can be a concern. And, oh yeah, some people really do need to park vehicles in busy places.
These potential issues can be overcome through grassroots-up, rather than top-down, site selection.