Top Creative Ways To Use Open Spaces
Open spaces are a precious commodity in today’s fast-paced, urbanized world. Whether you live in a bustling city or a more rural area, having access to open spaces can provide numerous benefits for your health, well-being, and overall quality of life. In this article, we will explore some of the many ways to make the most of open spaces and maximize the benefits they offer.
Enjoy Nature and Get Some Fresh Air
One of the most obvious ways to use open spaces is simply to spend time outdoors. This can be a great way to reconnect with nature, get some much-needed fresh air, and enjoy the beauty of the natural world.
Whether you’re hiking in a nearby park, taking a walk along a scenic trail, or simply lounging in a nearby meadow, the simple act of spending time outdoors can have a profound impact on your mental and physical health.
Exercise and Stay Active
Open spaces can also be a great place to exercise and stay active. Whether you’re looking to get a workout in, practice yoga, or simply enjoy some light exercise, open spaces offer plenty of opportunities to stay fit and healthy. Additionally, exercising in open spaces can be much more enjoyable than working out in a gym, as it allows you to be surrounded by nature and enjoy the beautiful scenery.
Host Outdoor Events and Gatherings
Another great way to use open spaces is to host outdoor events and gatherings. This can be a great way to bring people together, whether it’s for a picnic, a birthday party, or a simple get-together. By hosting events in open spaces, you can take advantage of the beautiful scenery, fresh air, and ample space, creating a truly memorable experience for everyone involved.
Take Part in Outdoor Activities
Open spaces also offer numerous opportunities for outdoor activities, such as sports, games, and recreational activities. Whether you’re a fan of soccer, frisbee, or simply playing catch with friends, open spaces can provide the perfect place to enjoy these activities and stay active. Additionally, many open spaces offer facilities and equipment, such as picnic tables, playgrounds, and ball fields, that can enhance the experience and make it even more enjoyable.
Transforming Open Spaces
Unused open spaces in a community may cause a string of issues for local officials and citizens alike. They’re often turned into dumpsites or a hideout for dangerous and illegal activities. Eventually, this may affect the neighborhood’s reputation, and may even cause health and safety concerns in the community.
That’s why if there are unused open spaces in a community, it’s always a good idea to turn them into something that has a meaningful purpose. However, before transforming public open spaces and making any changes, you need to first consult with the urban planning committee in your district. This is to make sure that you conform to their policies for the use and transformation of open spaces. Aside from that, you should also consider the economic, social, recreational, natural, and cultural needs of your community.
If these are details you can take care of without much hassle, then the only thing you’ll be needing next are ideas.
As an inspiration, here are some creative ways you can try to turn unused open spaces in your community into vibrant public places:
Start Community Gardens
What better way to make a free space more useful than to start a community garden? The idea isn’t as overwhelming as you might think. You only need to tap a few people with the same ideas as yours to help you kick-start the project. After that, create a detailed plan that you can present to the local authorities in your community. Once it’s approved and you have all the resources you need, you can start a community garden.
Starting a community garden through a collaborative effort can potentially decrease the crime rate and the number of hungry people in the community. Aside from creating a nearby source of fresh produce, participating community members will also be able to save on food costs.
Organize Local Market Plazas
Local market plazas have become a trend in many communities but they are far more than that. They offer huge potential most especially in the local economy as they not only provide income to the merchants within the plaza but may also help build local business partnerships.
Aside from that, local market plazas these days often serve as the ‘living room’ of a city or town, where people can gather to eat, buy products, and simply interact with one another.
Local markets are also highly beneficial for the local economy in many ways. Since more money stays within the community, it helps to boost the economy locally, while also helping to fill in the gaps in the local market product-wise. Consequently, it can inspire the development of new products according to the demands of consumers within the community.
Build A Picnic Park
Parks are the best place for community people to gather at. It can even be used to hold events and small daily gatherings like morning exercises or just having a lunch or afternoon picnic with family and friends. When large enough, parks can also be used for town festivals and other crowd-gathering events.
To turn an open space into a lovely picnic park, plan a nature-friendly landscape with trees, shrubs, and flowers around the area. Trees should be scattered and big enough to provide shade in most areas of the park. Installing bench seats and tables may also encourage people to stay longer.
Tiny forests can be created just about anywhere as they don’t require a huge amount of land. Moreover, there’s a wide variety of fast-growing trees that can be planted to create a mini-forest.
Mini-forests are best suited in crowded metropolitan areas where they can help improve air quality. The advantages of planting trees in open spaces go beyond their aesthetic value as they help reduce air, water, and even noise pollution. Aside from that, mini-forests may also serve as a habitat for butterflies and birds.
Turn Passive Streets Into Inviting Sidewalks
Streets are multifunctional public open spaces. However, when sidewalks are big enough but look too bare and have no real purpose, it may seem like wasted space, especially when it’s neglected and not maintained.
Transforming streets into multipurpose public spaces that might interest people can be based on three things: providing a sense of safety, encouraging exciting activities, and displaying interesting attractions. What makes streets livable nowadays is when people feel a desire to not just go through it, but to go to it.
If the streets in your community have unused open spaces on the sidewalk, with enough room for a few creative ideas, here are some suggestions you can try adding:
- Food booths
- Waiting areas with roofs and benches
- Plants and shrubs
- Vending machines for food and essential items
- Wall art
These ideas are also an opportunity to showcase local culture, as food and art are great media for this purpose.
Public open spaces, like other community services and infrastructure, are useful public assets that can make communities more livable, equitable, and prosperous. For successful communities, open spaces transformed into inviting spaces continue to serve many purposes.
Although the transformation process is understandably daunting and challenging especially in smaller communities, more countries are developing laws and better standards to govern the planning process of public open spaces. Also, there are lots of non-profit foundations advocating urban transformation for a safer and greener environment, and they’re all keen on helping communities.
Relax and Recharge
Finally, open spaces can be a great place to relax and recharge. Whether you’re looking for a quiet place to read, meditate, or simply enjoy some solitude, open spaces can provide the perfect escape from the stresses of daily life. By taking advantage of the peaceful surroundings and beautiful scenery, you can rejuvenate both your mind and body, leaving you feeling refreshed and rejuvenated.
In conclusion, open spaces offer a wealth of benefits and opportunities for people of all ages and backgrounds. Whether you’re looking to get some fresh air, exercise, host events, participate in outdoor activities, or simply relax and recharge, open spaces can provide the perfect solution. So why not take advantage of the open spaces near you and experience the many benefits they have to offer?