Temporary parklets will occupy former parking spaces

Competition launches for mini parks in Central London
Competition launches for mini parks in Central London

Team London Bridge (TLB) and partners have launched a design competition for the delivery of Fresh Air Squares ‘parklets’ in the London Bridge and Vauxhall areas of central London. The aim is to deliver the first Fresh Air Square in September 2015, followed by a further three to four locations in spring 2016.

Fresh Air Squares will replace (multiple) London car parking spaces for a period of one week to a year to improve the local environment and to raise awareness about air quality issues. They will be designed to incorporate (a) planting and seating (b) an air quality monitoring station (c) specialised plant species to mitigate air pollution and (d) sustainable urban drainage.

Parklets have been a huge success in American cities such as San Francisco. What is unique about the Fresh Air Square, say the organisers, ‘is that it aims to deliver a modular, transportable and easily modified parklet that incorporates sustainable urban drainage and air quality monitoring.’

Fresh Air Squares will be co-funded by the Transport for London Future Streets Incubator Fund which supports innovative on-street trials that aim to encourage sustainable transport and create ‘vibrant public spaces’.

The organisers say that they are ‘looking for your design talents to create a beautiful, functional addition to London’s streets and need to be assured that your project management skills can work with the partnership team to ensure delivery to the brief, on time and on budget.’

Shortlisted Fresh Air Square designs will be promoted via the London Festival of Architecture 2015. Four shortlisted entries will be invited to present at an open architectural ‘crit’ on 24 June in front of an industry audience and expert panel hosted at London’s Living Room, City Hall.

The closing date for the competition is Tuesday 12 May. For more details click here.

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