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Urban parks
#16
Given the greenery (small but noticeable) on the other two land spaces adjacent to Duke and Francis, making it a bit of a green intersection by carving out some of that parking lot - perhaps when it finally gets put to more productive use - would be nice.
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#17
Last year in Montréal I noticed a very creative way to create mini parks.  They use shipping containers repurposed as tiny sitting areas along some of the major streets.  They plop them on the side of the road taking up about four parking spaces.  They can be temporary or permanent.  I took a couple of pictures but I can't find them so here is a link to google images so you can get an idea of what they look like.  

https://www.google.ca/search?q=montreal+...0&bih=1012

I don't know if KW is ready for these but it's certainly worth thinking about.
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#18
This looks like an article about the shipping containers in Montréal:

http://popupcity.net/turning-grey-boxes-...en-spaces/

I'd really enjoying seeing something like this here, especially with how they are decorated by artists. I can envision great work by Neruda Arts, Chris Austin, and many others.
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#19
(01-30-2018, 11:55 AM)MidTowner Wrote: I can’t think of a playground in the strictly-defined downtown core. I would like to see more parks on the scale of Hibner Park (Young and Ahrens) with just some basic play equipment. We want more people living downtown, and the absence of that amenity seems like a barrier to that.

How strictly are you defining Downtown? There is a playground at Civic Centre Park. For that matter, there is also one at Suddaby Public School.
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#20
Quite strictly, in that case. I thought of the park by the library, but it’s on the other side of Weber.

I don’t know how much is required, or where. But I can’t think of an amenity whose utility is more sensitive to distance. And there are slim pickings in and around the downtown.
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#21
2-3 blocks is too far for a playground? There is no way the city will ever be able to justify having a playground on every other block. And I can't think of any significant-size city that has that many playgrounds in its downtown area.
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#22
(01-31-2018, 01:33 PM)tomh009 Wrote: 2-3 blocks is too far for a playground? There is no way the city will ever be able to justify having a playground on every other block. And I can't think of any significant-size city that has that many playgrounds in its downtown area.

That is not at all what I said...

What I said was, I don't think there's enough, and "I don't know" how many would be needed. The corollary to that being, if we want families to think seriously about moving downtown. If we don't, then there's probably exactly the right number.
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#23
Here is my dream park / city building idea:

1) City buys Market Square from its new owners (Europro) in exchange for development credits or waiver of property taxes on other properties (etc etc).

2) City demolishes Market Square and creates a new urban park anchoring the east end.  This becomes the 'central park' of kitchener.

3) The new park is designed in such a way that it can be the host of all Oktoberfest activities with each German club erecting a tent to emulate the Munich Oktoberfest.  I think a centralized Oktoberfest (serving good beer... but that is a different story) would really make a big difference.  It would also push Oktoberfest patrons onto public transit with good LRT options available.

Thoughts?
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#24
(01-31-2018, 11:05 AM)robdrimmie Wrote: This looks like an article about the shipping containers in Montréal:

http://popupcity.net/turning-grey-boxes-...en-spaces/

I'd really enjoying seeing something like this here, especially with how they are decorated by artists. I can envision great work by Neruda Arts, Chris Austin, and many others.

I would like to see something like this too.  But most of the streets downtown are only two lanes so I’m not sure where they would work.  And thanks for the link.  I had no idea this had happened in other cities.
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#25
(01-31-2018, 06:24 PM)jgsz Wrote:
(01-31-2018, 11:05 AM)robdrimmie Wrote: This looks like an article about the shipping containers in Montréal:

http://popupcity.net/turning-grey-boxes-...en-spaces/

I'd really enjoying seeing something like this here, especially with how they are decorated by artists. I can envision great work by Neruda Arts, Chris Austin, and many others.

I would like to see something like this too.  But most of the streets downtown are only two lanes so I’m not sure where they would work.  And thanks for the link.  I had no idea this had happened in other cities.

You could easiily fit a couple of them in parking bays along King St.  Ottawa has had a few of these mini-park things built and installed along busy commerical streets.  I'm not a fan.
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#26
(01-31-2018, 02:24 PM)MidTowner Wrote:
(01-31-2018, 01:33 PM)tomh009 Wrote: 2-3 blocks is too far for a playground? There is no way the city will ever be able to justify having a playground on every other block. And I can't think of any significant-size city that has that many playgrounds in its downtown area.

That is not at all what I said...

What I said was, I don't think there's enough, and "I don't know" how many would be needed. The corollary to that being, if we want families to think seriously about moving downtown. If we don't, then there's probably exactly the right number.

But if you're limiting "downtown parks" to the space between Weber and Charles, then you really are saying that the playgrounds must be right next to the people living downtown.

I personally think 3-4 blocks away from one's house or apartment is still very close: playgrounds are not frequently used by elderly or disabled people.
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#27
Yes, that’s true, when I was thinking of the “strict” boundaries of downtown I was thinking Charles-Cedar-Weber-Victoria. That’s a pretty narrow area. But, given that it’s supposed to be the densest area in the city, I think it’s a shame it doesn’t have a single (that I can think of) playground.

This conversation started with a woman saying that there should be a place to play near Victoria and King, and I think she has a point. If you’re a young couple buying a unit at 1 Victoria, for instance, it’s probably a good 15 minute walk to the nearest playground. And that’s at adult walking speed. It’s true that the elderly don’t tend to use playgrounds (although, I think we could make space for an outdoor exercise area or two for older adults downtown, too), but children do. They don’t walk at the same speed as able-bodied adults, and don’t have the same stamina.

And, sorry to be pedantic, but I don’t think “blocks” is a great unit of measurement in a city like KW, even downtown. When I think block, I think something less than 100 metres. But I don’t know if that’s correct, or what you mean when you say it.
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#28
(01-31-2018, 11:05 AM)robdrimmie Wrote: This looks like an article about the shipping containers in Montréal:

http://popupcity.net/turning-grey-boxes-...en-spaces/

I'd really enjoying seeing something like this here, especially with how they are decorated by artists. I can envision great work by Neruda Arts, Chris Austin, and many others.

How cool is that ?  What a great idea for a temporary quiet zone...
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#29
(02-01-2018, 07:51 AM)tomh009 Wrote:
(01-31-2018, 02:24 PM)MidTowner Wrote: That is not at all what I said...

What I said was, I don't think there's enough, and "I don't know" how many would be needed. The corollary to that being, if we want families to think seriously about moving downtown. If we don't, then there's probably exactly the right number.

But if you're limiting "downtown parks" to the space between Weber and Charles, then you really are saying that the playgrounds must be right next to the people living downtown.

I personally think 3-4 blocks away from one's house or apartment is still very close: playgrounds are not frequently used by elderly or disabled people.

I don't think it's fair to say elderly and disabled people don't use parks.

They don't use playgrounds....but they do use parks.  Some parks are not much more than a playground, but that doesn't have to be the case.
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#30
An example of how Ottawa does parklets - designed by students at the Carleton School of Architecture, cost $20,000:

[Image: 2ld7k09.jpg]

[Image: 20r1vk5.jpg]

[Image: 5cdcol.jpg]
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