Maximizing Downtown Event Space

In an effort to encourage owners of parking garages to activate their spaces during down times, the Cleveland Urban Design Collaborative created a pop-up rooftop performance venue at a downtown parking garage.

“We were hoping owners would see that garages could be put to really good use during the evening hours when it’s not as busy downtown,” says Terry Schwarz, director of the collaborative, noting that top floors of parking garages often have good acoustics, nice views, and, “make pretty nice venues.” Especially since event parking is available on the lower floors of the same building.

The group transformed a barren concrete parking garage into a glittering space featuring inflatable art, balloons, twinkling lights, a fountain pond, an artificial grassy green space, a sound stage for live music, and more.

While the event has not been replicated by Cleveland parking garage owners, an unrelated development in Miami, FL, indicates that the trend could catch on. A $65 million parking garage was designed to provide event space and is the site of weddings, charity events, wine tastings, and more.

The full article appeared in our print edition. To always get the full story, read Downtown Idea Exchange.

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