Placemaking: San Francisco Parklet Program

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What it does: 

As a part of San Francisco’s Pavement to Parks Program, the Parklet Program works towards converting underused spaces in San Francisco to aesthetically pleasing, pedestrian friendly parklets. All parklets include seating, landscaping, and paving treatments.


The program aims to support local businesses, foster neighborhood interaction, create a stronger basis for potential improvements, enhance pedestrian safety and activities, and reduce auto dependency.

Cost & Financing: 

The Department of Public Works charges one time fees of under $2000 to establish the parklet, plus an annual permit fee of $221. Additional fees may be charged dependent on location and proposal for curb zone changes, meter removal, bike corral, or sidewalk landscaping. 


The program began in March 2010 with five pilot projects in four neighborhoods in San Francisco. As of 2013, 38 parklets are installed throughout the city and the program has expanded to include mobile parklets.

Great Streets Project found implementing the Divisadero Street parklet increased people’s sense of neighborhood character from 80% to 90%. On Stockton Street, foot traffic increased 44% and the number of people stopping to engage in stationary activities tripled on Polk Street. At least 20 of the locations have had an incremental increase in the number of bikes parked at each location.[1]

Cities around the world have developed or are now considering similar programs. 

[1] Parklet Impact Study by the San Francisco Greater Streets Project

Key Contacts: 

Name Organization Phone Number E-mail
Ilaria Salvadori San Francisco Planning Department (415) 575-9086
Robin Abad Ocubillo San Francisco Planning Department (415) 575-9123

San Francisco Planning Department, Department of Public Works, San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency, and Office of Economic and Workforce Development partnered with leading nonprofit partners and local artists. 

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Last updated May 15, 2015 | Written By Mimi Tam