Activist art and design group REBAR, based in San Francisco, started PARK(ing) Day in 2005. PARK(ing) Day is a one-day international event where people transform public parking spots into parks.
For PARK(ing) Day 2007, the group decided to build the PARKcycle, a pedal-powered, mobile park or a green limousine, to transform parking spots in San Francisco into a space where pedestrians can sit back and enjoy the sun. REBAR’s intent with the green limo is to shift the balance from private vehicles towards pedestrians, bicyclists and mass transit, and change the way people see urban infrastructure.
The green limo is 22 feet long and has a large section of grass on its hood, which is inviting to pedestrians seeking a place to lounge. The green limo can be pedaled by two to three pilots and reaches top speeds of twelve miles per hour going downhill. It has a solar panel that powers the electric brake and rainwater-capturing technology that sustains the grass planting. Its metal skin is made from recycled industrial sheet metal, and its frame is made from a recycled vehicle.
PARKcycle is a legally-licensed vehicle in California and can occupy parking spaces, as long as they pay the parking meter. PARK(ing) Day will happen in cities across North America in September 2011.