Yesterday, at Bin Wine Bar in Lowertown, city officials and business owners discussed a collaborative effort to address a lack of outdoor seating. Looking to duplicate efforts in San Francisco and New York, San Francisco architect Riyad Ghannam was in town to present his concept of the "Pop-Up Park," removable sidewalk seating to be used in the summer and stored in the winter. Installed in the parking meter spaces in front of the businesses, the units are made of hardwood, similar to a small deck, designed to appear like an extension of Mears Park.
Ghannam said the businesses that have integrated this seating plan have
seen a 15 to 20 percent increase in sales. Rebecca Illingworth, owner of
Bin, says she has felt a real need for additional outdoor seating to
stimulate business, and to enhance the experience of her guests in the
Having this seating plan across from the park along Sixth
Street would mean losing 23 parking stalls for about four months of the
year, which causes concern. But as city officials and business owners
consider the plans, the advantages are that no permanent changes have to
be made-- the "parks" can simply be moved to another location if the
experiment is unsuccessful.
The "Pop-Up Park" model will be on display in front of Bin Wine Bar, at Sixth Street and Sibley, until Sunday, September 26.
400 Sibley St., St. Paul, MN