What do you love about Covington? Is it the food, the arts and culture, the people, or the parks? Or is it that in Covington, we know that the unthinkable can become possible with a little elbow grease and creative talent? Whether it be public art, creative placemaking or the creations of local design firms, we’ve got some serious gumption. Until now, there has been one publicly owned arena that has gone virtually overlooked: parking spaces.

Imagine a world where the streets are filled with food and drink and celebration instead of cars. A city where public art not only pushes the boundaries of tradition, but also breaks free from the gallery itself and lives out in the street for all to see and enjoy.

 

A little corny, right? But seriously this could be a reality where we, the hardworking and imaginative public, reclaim and redefine the shared spaces that we already own.

Wait! Before I lose you let me explain…

Enter Curb'd, Covington’s own design-based competition that’s looking to break all the rules (except building codes) by promoting the installation of parklets. What are “parklets” you might ask? We’ll tell you: parklets are the adorably named structures that temporarily occupy the public right-of-way. They are inexpensive and create a more pedestrian-friendly environment while expanding the social-life of the street. 

Imagine enjoying a jaw-dropping art exhibit or a leisurely nap on a street-side hammock, these are just some of the opportunities that are possible.  
Curb'd hopes to push the boundaries of these conventional standards by creating unique, immersive experiences within a parking space that will attract attention far and wide.

Initially, the project will focus on the downtown Covington and MainStrasse areas, which has a high-concentration of local businesses. Curb'd aims to support these businesses by promoting walkability, connectivity, and placemaking. Curb'd will showcase the region’s design talent through quasi-temporary public installations.

Here’s how it works: Curb'd will launch by issuing a “Call to Parking Spaces,” which will consist of an application process, as well as outline basic guidelines. The Curb'd team will then review submitted applications and select 12 businesses that will be eligible to receive concept proposals from Design teams. After making their selections, a “Call to Design Teams” will be issued to local design talent. Design teams may choose to submit a design for any (or all) of the businesses selected. The local business will then choose their favorite design proposal for the next round.

Before things get really crazy, business-owners and Design teams will be required to attend a “Fabrication Workshop” where they’ll discuss logistics and feasibility. After completing this process, an esteemed panel of experts will review the submissions and select the top five proposals to move forward with fabrication.

So that’s the skinny, hope we didn’t blow your mind too much. We invite you to continue following, sharing and (of course) participating in Curb'd. Even if you think this is madness we encourage you to apply and show us what you’ve got! After all, the best way to affect the outcome of this project is by getting involved and sharing ideas.

Got beef, praise, questions or concerns? Connect with us at hello@curbd.org.