Sunday, July 22, 2012

Supermarket and Convenience Store Parks-Seniors need both

 When you just want a container of milk, it's a lot easier going to the nearest convenience store or deli   rather then traveling to a supermarket.

In a similar way when you just want a place to sit near your present location is a different experience then walking up to  10 minutes  to reach the nearest community park/playground or  going out for a weekend trip to the Hudson River Park  or the High Line.

Chelsea  needs both large supermarket parks and small places near your block where you can just sit and relax outdoors.

We currently have a "Supermarket"sized  park/playgrounds/plaza within a 10 minute walk of ever Chelsea resident.

They (seniors)  care about benches, trees, gardens and open space closest to where they live. Big parks are for occasional visits in most cases.”  Creating an Age Friendly NY One Neighborhood at a Time 

What we are lacking are "Convenience store" parks within a minute or two walk of every Chelsea resident NYC has created a great system of centralized supermarket sized parks but has failed to create a complimentary system of  decentralized "Convenience store" sized  parks that would allow you to grab a seat near where your currently located.

A  Convenience store park can be as simple as a park bench near where you live

see Citybench to request a bench like this near where you live

   here are some other examples of  Convenience store park .

Micropark in Queens at 145th Street

A CURB EXTENSION that provides space for community facilities such as bicycle parking, seating,
and other street furniture.In areas with inadequate sidewalk width to accommodate needed functional sidewalk elements for the community, the extra space provided by a curb extension can be used for
bike parking, seating, public art, gardens, plantings, or trees, alone or in combination.

Improves the public realm and creates useful public space, particularly in areas where public open space is in short supply

Allows limited street space to serve multiple functions, thereby increasing the performance of street infrastructure

Page 69 NYC street Design Manual

Midblock Chicane Micropark

The mid-block chicane is a great way to
reclaim street space for use by the community,
and has proven an effective technique
to dramatically reduce vehicle speeds. Cars have ample space to maneuver around
the chicane; they must simply do so more slowly. (simulation). (Note this above is a Transportation Alternatives design, we would design with a combination of cement pathways and garden. )

A NYC Coffee Shop Transforms its Parking Spaces into Outdoor Seating

"The outdoor space was a hit from the beginning. The timelapse video below shows a "day in the life" of Local. 96 people enjoy the special seating in the space of a few hours, space usually taken up by two parked cars.
While I was at Local, a customer asked if they were going to install the platform again this year. The answer is yes- Liz and Craig plan on having it installed in April; it will remain in place until at least October.
On a street (and a city) where public space is limited, Liz said, the outdoor area recreated in miniature the "bench culture" of people bringing chairs to the street and creating a community. That opportunity to connect with people is especially important in cities, where, despite being surrounded by millions, it's easy to feel isolated and alone. And who needs all those cars, anyway?" link 

 Cost $11,000 

NYC DOT Sidewalks & Pedestrians Curbside Seating Platforms

Warren & Smith Streets, Brooklyn
Curbside public seating platforms offer well-designed seasonal, outdoor public open spaces and seating at places where sidewalk seating is not available. During warm-weather months, when the demand to spend time outdoors increases, curbside seating platforms may temporarily replace a few parking spots with neighborhood gathering places perfect for eating, reading, working, meeting a friend, or taking a rest. They also help beautify the streetscape with attractive landscaping.
Watch out a time-lapse video of a day in the life of a curbside seating platform
Download an evaluation of the 2011 pilot of curbside public seating (pdf)
Curbside seating platforms are designed, installed and maintained by the adjacent sponsoring business. The seating is open to the public, not restricted to patrons of any particular establishment. Waiter service or commercial activity at the tables is strictly prohibited, as is smoking and alcohol consumption. link