Advocacy, education and outreach in support of Vancouver's public spaces


Park(ing) Day – Every September 20th, all around the world urban activists transform selected metered-parking spots into a mini-parklet for a day. This phenomenon is known as PARK(ing) Day. Since 2007 the VPSN has fed the meter, installed astroturf, chairs, haybales, cornstalk fences, tables, and dance floors in parking spaces from Kingsway to Robson Street in order to engage Vancouverites in a discussion about parking and the street in our city. Highlights from these events include:


  • PARK(ING) DAY 2010 -In 2010 the VPSN held a rolling party, being ‘ticketed’ at three separate locations along Davie Street. Outraged passerbys volunteered to help the VPSN move the installation resulting in a engaged public dialogue between citizens and the municipal parking authorities.
  • PARK(ING) DAY 2011 – 2011 saw an official pop-up Vancouver Public Library room occur at Cambie Broadway complete with comfy chairs and a reference librarian with books for lending. Participants borrowed books, were offered amnesty for their overdue loans and enjoyed reading and talking about public space.
  • PARK(ING) DAY 2012 – For PARK(ing) Day 2012 the VPSN held a barn dance at Joyce and Kingsway complete with hay bale seating, a cornstalk fence and Western music. Generous local merchants donated lunch and a lively discussion was started around the merits and downsides of gentrification and the unfriendly pedestrian character of Kingsway.
  • PARK(ING) DAY 2013 – 2013 gathered a variety of community partners such as CityStudio, Modo Car Share, The Little Shop of Happenstance and Tradeworks to transform three parking spots outside of Japadog on Robson Street into a woody dining room. The parklet featured a number of mobile public spaces including one of Vancouver’s public pianos (the Polka Dot Piano), the Little Shop of Happenstance art creation rickshaw, a covered wagon art cart, and a series of long tables to make a musically oriented community space for the day.


300-block of Alexander St. Greenspace - In 2011, a one-day planting and place-making project transformed a section of the north sidewalk of Alexander St. into a landscaped boulevard.


Hastings Park Open Space Advisory Group – From May 2011 to June 2012, The Vancouver Public Space Network was a member of the Hastings Park Open Space Advisory Group. The committee met to advise City staff on open space projects in Hastings Park, including cycling routes, sports and play areas, and waterways. The group also provided feedback on the Hastings Park Master Plan, a proposal that outlined a transformation of Hastings Park from its current state to a greener, year-round destination that provides improved community access, additional park space, and renewed facilities for the annual PNE Fair, Playland and other festivals and events. After the group’s work was completed in spring of 2012, the city council approved the recommendations in July and construction of the first phase began early 2013.

Yaletown Park Perspectives Video - In 2010, the Parks Advocacy group conducted a series of interviews to gather people’s opinions on a very unique park in downtown Vancouver known as Yaletown Park.