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MU Takes Part in World "PARK(ing) Day"

Posted: Sep 20, 2013 6:36 AM by Elaina O'Connell, KOMU 8 Digital Producer

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COLUMBIA - In cities around the world Friday, artists, activists and citizens will temporarily transform metered parking spaces into public parks and other social spaces, as part of the annual event, "PARK(ing) Day."

The event was originally invented in 2005 by Rebar, a San Francisco-based art and design studio. PARK(ing) Day said it challenges people to rethink the way streets are used and reinforces the need for broad-based changes to urban infrastructure.

"In urban centers around the world, inexpensive curbside parking results in increased traffic, wasted fuel and more pollution," Rebar's Matthew Passmore said. "The planning strategies that generated these conditions are not sustainable, nor do they promote a healthy, vibrant human habitat.PARK(ing) Day is about re-imagining the possibilities of the urban landscape."

MU's Parks, Recreation & Tourism Graduate Student Association will create a mini park from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Friday by transforming two metered parking spaces on Hitt Street, between the MU Student Center and Agriculture Building, with sod, plants and outdoor furniture. Students will educate visitors about the importance of parks and will distribute trail maps, tree brochures and other park-related information.

Since 2005, the project has grown into a worldwide grassroots movement: PARK(ing) Day 2012 included more than 1,000 "PARK" installations in more than 160 cities in 35 countries on six continents. This year, the project plans to continue to expanding to urban centers across the globe.

More information regarding globalPARK(ing) Day activities and a global map of all participating cities are available on the PARK(ing) Day website.

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