Colorful social distancing squares coming to Austin parks — Sightlines

Some of Austin’s most popular parks are receiving clever intervention to encourage social distancing.

The green spaces at Roy Guerrero Colorado River Park, Pease Park, Republic Square, and Zilker Park will soon feature colorful grids of socially distant spaces delimiting the CDC recommended distance and allowing people to navigate and navigate the outdoors to enjoy.

Concept rendering for the Republic Square Parkspace project courtesy of the Austin Foundation for Architecture.

Architects and designers working on behalf of the Austin Foundation for Architecture have created a different color palette for each park based on flowers from central Texas, including bluebonnets, lantana, and prickly pear blossoms.

The eight-foot boxes, each six feet apart, painted with eco-friendly turf paint, will be completed on July 4th. Future locations in parks across Austin are planned.


As the coronavirus pandemic continues, some clever methods of labeling social distancing parameters have emerged. Lawn circles have recently been offered in the parks in San Francisco and New York.

The Austin project called Parkspace is led by the Austin Foundation for Architecture with support from AIA Austin and in collaboration with the Austin Department of Parks and Recreation, the Pease Park Conservancy and the Downtown Austin Alliance Foundation.

Concept rendering for the Zilker Park Parkspace project courtesy of the Austin Foundation for Architecture.Concept rendering for the Zilker Park Parkspace project courtesy of the Austin Foundation for Architecture.

“Creative placemaking is a community experience and Parkspace is an installation for our time. A new way of being together, ”Mayor Steve Adler said in a press release.

“We couldn’t be more excited to be part of this important, timely, relevant and necessary project,” said Ingrid Spencer, executive director of the Austin Foundation for Architecture and AIA Austin. “Parkspace boldly interweaves the elements of architectural landscaping and a campaign to raise awareness of social distancing into an exciting public outdoor experience.”

Concept rendering for the Pease Park Parkspace project courtesy of the Austin Foundation for Architecture.Concept rendering for the Pease Park Parkspace project courtesy of the Austin Foundation for Architecture.

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