The North Central Texas Council of Governments announced awardees for their Green, Blue, Grey Grant program today and AP Development made the cut!
We proposed a bike rack prototype, beautiful and seamlessly functional, designed for walkable urban entertainment centers where parking is scarce.
Our team includes Robert MeckFessel with DSGN Architects, Mikel Wilkins Urban Ecoplan Landscape Architects and Engineering, Gary Bucker of Stash Design, and our community of cycling activists lead by Bike Friendly Oak Cliff. Together we plan to bring the project to fruition by Summer 2019.
We will create a bike rack design for the Bishop Arts District that could be easily built and installed in other neighborhood entertainment districts as well. Built around a historic trolley stop before cars dictated urban design, the Bishop Arts District is seeing such a resurgence that the automobile parking demand threatens the very charm that makes the district so popular. We see this trend occurring across North Central Texas and across the nation.
Like other regional metropolitan planning organizations, the NCTCOG primarily funnels federal transportation funding to the region's cities. This grant is designed to inspire silo-crossing creativity to solve our biggest 'grey infrastructure' (transportation) issues by incorporating 'green infrastructure' (environmental) and 'blue infrastructure' (water) solutions.
Our project melds bike parking with a Parklet-style extension of the sidewalk, with plants and water filtration as our 'green' and 'blue' infrastructure components.
Parklet in San Francisco, photo from City of Eureka
The design will be similar to a Parklet, commonly defined as "a mini-park (approximately 8 feet wide by 20 feet long) that occupies one on-street parking space in order to provide space and amenities for public recreation or seating for private businesses." Or, in this case, bike parking.
Freewheel Parklet, Valencia Street San Francisco, November 2011
Parklets often are the same height as the sidewalk, creating an extension of the pedestrian realm into the street.
Similar to a Green Roof installation, the plants will live atop the impermeable roof, in this case, atop the street. We will select plant species that are we'll adapted to this type of environment where roots cannot extend very deep and they're primarily in full sun.
The real beauty of the design will be the ability to fit it into a busting urban environment where parking (and likely greenery) are limited. In addition to providing bike parking for patrons, the design will attract attention and entice others to ride their own bike when they come to the district.