Residents choose a green park instead a car park!
The "Movimento pelo Jardim do Caracol da Penha" has a dream: a green and colorful space in the centre of the neighbourhood Penha de França (Lisbon), a green space open to all people and without cars.
The interest group "Movement for the Jardim do Caracol da Penha" using social media won as the most ever voted project the financing for its implementation through the Lisbon participatory budgeting. The 9.477 votes is a a result of the population's commitment to creating a new green space "without cars" in the neighbourhood Penha de França. This neighbourhood, according to a survey of the group is among the five parishes of Lisbon with huge green space deficits: residents have here less than 1 square meter green per inhabitant. Nevertheless, the Municipal Mobility and Parking Company of Lisbon was planning to build a car park in the area.
Now, based on the proposal voted in the Participatory Budgeting, the Movement will carry out public workshops to design the "Jardim do Caracol da Penha" with financial support by City Council. A participatory process for collecting insights and suggestions, and a debate aiming at defining the project in more details will be the next steps.
This project - even in the very beginning - showcases the potential residents have to build their own environment. Social media - played a relevant role in informing and motivating people to fight for a more liveable environment.
The next steps also relevant in the sense of creating inclusive public spaces placed in the heart of the neighborhoods - demonstrating the capacity "good public spaces" have to attach people to their environment.