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This town turned its old, decrepit gas station into something remarkable — and other cities are taking note

Now, the Mini Mart City Park is a community space, art venue, and public park.

Mini Mart City Park, gas station into community space

Photo Credit: iStock

The green energy takeover seems inevitable. More and more electric vehicles (EVs) are sold every year, wind and solar continue to take over energy grids worldwide, and nuclear technologies are increasing in desirability and efficiency. 

Gasoline’s days are numbered.

This also means that thousands of gas stations will eventually be abandoned — unless, of course, they are reinvented to serve a new purpose. 

And this is exactly what the Mini Mart City Park project set out to do — transform a derelict gas station into something new to serve the local community.

After pumping gas and poisoning the nearby soil for decades (even storing jet fuel during World War II), the Seattle site was decommissioned in the 1980s. 

The site was purchased by art collective SuttonBeresCuller, demolished, and rebuilt with the help of the architecture and design firm GO’C, which got involved in the project in 2014. The nearby grounds underwent extensive decontamination, and the new building is fitted with an air-sparging and soil vapor extraction remediation system.

The entire project was funded with grant money, which means every penny had to be carefully accounted for and is partly why the project took eight years to complete.

Now, the Mini Mart City Park is a community space, art venue, public park, and also a symbol of reimagination for a world turning away from gasoline. It’s a glowing example of how a bit of will and community-focused thinking can lead to new life for all kinds of similar sites.

If you’re near the art installation, consider checking it out, and let it refuel your hope for a greener world.

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