Greetings From…Park(ing) Day 2012…Wish You Were Here

Editor’s Note: Meant to make us think a little about the uses of public space, Park(ing) Day 2012 is the fifth annual Philadelphia version of the event, which began in 2005 in San Francisco. This year 49 teams from design firms, city agencies, and advocacy organizations signed up to create 59 mini-parks out of what are on every other day of the year parking spaces. Not all of the groups followed through on their plans, but photographer Dominic Mercier checked in with more than a dozen ephemeral civic spaces and returned with the photos below.

1600 block of Walnut St. | Photo: Dominic Mercier

Broad St. between Walnut and Locust | Photo: Dominic Mercier

17th and Market St. | Photo: Dominic Mercier

12th St. between Market and Arch | Photo: Dominic Mercier

1300 block of Walnut St.

1300 block of Walnut St. | Photo: Dominic Mercier

16th and Arch | Photo: Dominic Mercier

16th and Arch | Photo: Dominic Mercier

1500 block of Market St. | Photo: Dominic Mercier

800 block of Walnut St. | Photo: Dominic Mercier

600 block of Chestnut St. | Photo: Dominic Mercier

1500 block of Walnut St. | Photo: Dominic Mercier

1900 block of Walnut St. | Photo: Dominic Mercier

700 block of Chestnut St. | Photo: Dominic Mercier

About the author

Dominic Mercier is a freelance writer, photographer, and graphic designer and Philadelphia native. He is a 2001 graduate of Temple University, where he majored in journalism. He is the former managing editor of Montgomery Newspapers and press officer at the Philadelphia Museum of Art. He currently serves as the communications director for the Philadelphia Chapter of the American Institute of Architects. More of his photographic work can be seen here

Send a message!



6 Comments


  1. Just what Philadelphia needs – fewer places to park. PC silliness at best.

  2. Exactly what Philly NEEDS! A few less cars in CC!
    Contrary to popular opinion, we have an excellent transit system
    and (slowly) growing bike lanes. Let’s make use of them.
    Silly? Maybe, but it makes one think.
    Good coverage of this from fellow HC contributor, Dominic Mercier.

  3. “A few less cars” – no what the Bicycle Coalition and their Friends want is to get rid of cars, period.

    In the meantime the suburbs continue to flourish – when was the last time anyone chose to shop in town rather than the malls?

  4. This is awesome. Hopefully the city will start to reclaiming car space for everyone space.

  5. I go downtown to shop all the time, using public transit. I can’t remember the last time I went to the mall, but it was years ago. The bike coalition isn’t coming to take anyone’s car away…

  6. Thank you for posting. We had 6 spots, and 4 locations up in Germantown, and all were really well-attended and well received by the community. Looking forward to next year.

Recent Posts
Fishtown Residents Push Back Against Planned Church Demolition

Fishtown Residents Push Back Against Planned Church Demolition

February 11, 2016  |  News

Can the former East Montgomery Avenue Methodist Episcopal Church, for years a hub for artists and the community, be saved? Ryan Briggs reports > more

Parks & Rec To Activate Spaces With Mobile Bar & Garden Program

Parks & Rec To Activate Spaces With Mobile Bar & Garden Program

February 11, 2016  |  Morning Blend

Parks & Rec to get in the beer garden game, Mt. Airy residents to miss Lovett Memorial Library during renovations, Tacony-Disston nominated to National Historic Register, and the School District finds temporary space for Science Leadership Academy in Drexel building > more

Fabric Row Clothed In Light

Fabric Row Clothed In Light

February 10, 2016  |  Morning Blend

Fabric Row gets new street lighting, affordable housing set for Point Breeze, North Philly museum provides setting for short film, and Dranoff gets an assist from Squilla > more

The Life And Death Of Callowhill

The Life And Death Of Callowhill

February 10, 2016  |  Harry K's Encyclopedia

Callowhill Street is now a two-way from 2nd Street to Columbus Boulevard, changing the one-way east-heading regulation that has been in place since I-95 was built. Harry K connects the new ordinance with the salty history and sad ending of the surrounding neighborhood > more

Water Taxiing To The Navy Yard?

Water Taxiing To The Navy Yard?

February 9, 2016  |  Morning Blend

A plan for water taxing to the Navy Yard, The Gallery redevelopment delayed once more, PennDOT to reconfigure Franklin Institute’s Winter Street, SEPTA looking to increase El capacity, and more scenes of Philly in the snow > more

Low Income Housing For Artists In West Powelton To Break Ground

Low Income Housing For Artists In West Powelton To Break Ground

February 8, 2016  |  Buzz

Affordable live-work space project in West Philadelphia will provide stable rent costs to area artists > more