Tiny parks the size of parking spaces costing ‘£ 19,000 each’ planned for roads in the Borough of East London

A north-east London council plans to build tiny parks the size of parking spaces in the borough.

The Waltham Forest Council invites local businesses to send in their ideas for what they call “parklets” to be established throughout the borough of East London.

Parklets, or mini-parks, have been popping up around Waltham Forest and other parts of London for several years as part of an initiative to promote green and outdoor community spaces and to stimulate local small businesses such as cafes. and restaurants.

Spaces can be as small as parking lots or pedestrian refuge islands that have been repurposed to “improve the cityscape”.

READ MORE: Woman wants to turn thousands of parking spaces into small parks after being hit by motorcycle

The council says it is currently “developing plans for a resident-led parking program, with an emphasis on low-cost, resident-developed and managed interventions that further highlight of ways in which a single parking space can be reimagined ”.

Waltham Forest led the way by rolling out parklets in London

The initiative is co-financed by the council and local businesses, with the council taking charge of the construction and maintenance of the spaces.

Local actors are responsible for their use and general maintenance.

Cllr Clyde Loakes, Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for the Environment, said: “People are so used to parked cars that dominate our streets that we may not realize how much space they actually occupy.

“But instead of using a parking space for a polluting piece of metal that sits dormant 95% of the time, we could instead use the space for a small garden, seating for a cafe or a park where our children could play. in.

“Piece by piece, we are dismantling an idea that has dominated our culture for the past 50 years that the car is king, so these Parklets will allow residents to reclaim some of their territory from parked cars.”

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The inhabitants of the district have largely responded positively to the few parklets already built.

One person described a parklet built on Winchelsea Road as a “wonderful space and a great improvement over the slightly gloomy outlook previously (usually a side view of a pickup truck)”.

The owner of a local wine bar also said the parklet was “loved by everyone”, adding: “our little corner of Waltham Forest just makes it better.”

But not all residents are happy with the small green spaces.

However, some expressed shock at the costs involved in building the parklet on Winchelsea Road, as well as another on Coppermill Lane.

The two parklets, which were both funded by Transport for London, together cost a total of £ 38,760.

The Council will unveil more details on the program in early 2022.

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