Area residents will be able to enjoy themselves in a new way on Friday, Sept. 20, from 9 a.m.-5 p.m., during Fairfax City’s first annual Park(ing) Day. During this fun event, parking spaces at both Fair City Mall and Main Street Marketplace will be turned into two individual pop-up parks.
Park(ing) Day began in September 2005 when a single parking space in downtown San Francisco was transformed into a reimagined public place. Since then, Park(ing) Day has become an international event celebrated on the third Friday in September, changing parking spaces into pop-up, public spaces for a short time.
In Fairfax City, the installation at Fair City Mall at 9650 Main St. will include large picnic games, touch-a-CUE-bus and promotions from participating mall businesses. The Main Street Marketplace parklet at 10300 Main St. will feature a public art, rain installation, plus specials from members of the Old Town Fairfax Business Assn.
“Fairfax City continues to think outside the box – and, in this case, the parking space – when it comes to making connections between businesses, residents and consumers,” said Fairfax Mayor David Meyer. “This is a creative way to showcase two activity centers in the City while having some fun.”
Sponsoring this event are the City of Fairfax Office of Economic Development, the Old Town Fairfax Business Assn. and Fair City Mall. And Danette Nguyen, Assistant Director/Programs Director of Economic Development, is looking forward to it.
“The Park(ing) Day movement enlivens streets by temporarily transforming them into social spaces that strengthen community connection and encourage people to rethink their urban landscape,” she explained. “The city’s pop-up parks not only support the reactivation of public space, but also the visibility of our great business community.”
Chloe Ritter, Multimodal Transportation Planner, said CUE Bus is excited to participate in the City’s first Park(ing) Day event at Fair City Mall. In addition, she said, “CUE is providing free rides all week for Try Transit Week and Car Free Day. It’s a great chance to give transit a try, as we reimagine our [City] transportation options.”
“The Old Town Fairfax Business Assn. relies on our businesses’ creativity, enthusiasm and broad-based talents to communicate our mission and support community events such as Park(ing) Day,” said Shannon Duffy, Business Coordinator for the Old Town Fairfax Business Assn. “We are thrilled to collaborate with them and demonstrate our commitment to promote an urban infrastructure and business community that is healthy, vibrant and walkable.”
During the event, residents and visitors alike are encouraged to play, interact, shop and share photos of their experience using the hashtag #ParkingDay and #ParkingDayFairfaxCity. For more information, visit fairfaxva.gov/parking.