A ‘parklet’ based on a classic Piaggio van has been installed in a Warwickshire town after the previous version was removed by the council.
Adam Tranter first created a ‘mini park’ – complete with a bench, flowers and artificial turf – in a Kenilworth parking space during ‘Car Free Day’ in September last year.
“I thought I’d see what people would do,” Tranter told the PA news agency. “People started sitting on it, taking photos and they generally seemed to love it.”
However, six months later the setup was taken away by the council after a single complaint was lodged against it.
Now, Tranter has reignited the idea with a new motorised parklet based on a 1970s Piaggio Ape van. Fitted with a bench, flowers and planters, the van is insured and has a resident’s permit so can legitimately take a space in the high street’s car parking area.
The van is placed to allow people to stop and chat, or to take a break from their day-to-day activities.
“I think this is a way to make people think and how we can make our public space better,” said Tranter. “If you give communities a bit of creative license then you’ll probably find that places where people live and work are that little bit nicer.”
“There’s still ample parking, but lots of people walk to the shops and if they’ve got somewhere to sit then they’re more likely to use the local high street instead of driving out of town.”
Created over the course of a month, the van ‘parklet’ was installed on Sunday, June 20, with visitors now free to stop and try it out.