Berkeley officials get closer to public ‘parklet’ policy

June 11, 2013

The Berkeley City Council could consider approving a two-year pilot program later this summer to allow businesses to set up parklets in still-to-be-determined locations around town.

So-called parklets — small pockets of open space that are sprouting up in cities around the globe — are a big trend in urban design, with San Francisco’s Pavement to Parks leading the way locally, and Oakland later following suit. Berkeley has, in recent years, been considering its own ideas to beautify public areas where community members can congregate.

The city began looking at parklets in 2011, and initially had planned to begin building them in early 2012. The process has been sluggish, at least in part, because the city does not have a permitting process in place, and several city agencies — including public works, engineering and transportation — have needed to weigh in.

In particular, restaurants and cafes in the North Shattuck Association have expressed interest in setting up the spaces. According to an earlier Berkeleyside story, ”the Cheese Board Collective has developed its own parklet concept, and Guerilla Café/Philz Coffee and Masse’s Pastries/Saul’s Restaurant and Delicatessen have come up with plans for parklets, in consultation with a volunteer designer using San Francisco guidelines.”

Read the full story at Berkeleyside.

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