For Parking Day 2018, IA has created an installation that rocks the conventional notion of what a landscape can be. We have chosen to focus on a district of San Francisco that is severely lacking in green space, the Lower Polk District of San Francisco. This unique neighborhood features a network of alleyways whose potential to be reclaimed as public spaces is just beginning to be realized.
INTERSTICE worked in collaboration with the Lower Polk Neighbors to create the new Lower Polk Alleyways Vision Plan, INTERSTICE Architects guided this community-driven process which has resulted in a uniquely community-initiated set of strategies and guidelines designed to understand these alleyways, not as singular back-streets or isolated funding opportunities, but instead to consider them as a whole – as a District.
With this installation, which is a prototype for what we plan on installing long term in an alley in the neighborhood, seeks to draw the public in– not just to look, but to let their guard down and share in this public space together.
The large rocking structure is constructed of plywood sheets that have been CNC routed to form a partial sphere by interlocking. Large yoga balls were inflated inside each cavity, creating an unexpected texture and color for the surface of the platform to sit or recline on.
The rocking structure features a tree (generously on loan from Pacific Nurseries) installed within the base to provide shade, while also calling attention to the integral part that trees play in open spaces, even when they are the size of a parking spot.
Parking Day 2018 will mark the 12th year that INTERSTICE has been creating installations inspired by idea that public space for private vehicles must evolve to accommodate more than just the car – parking spaces can be a playful, dynamic, and textured topography of interaction. Here for a day – but suggesting a new horizon for shared streets.