Neighbourhood-led placemaking is a fun opportunity to enhance connections between people and the spaces in your community. 

What is placemaking?

Placemaking occurs in different forms such as community art, seating, colour, interactive elements, and other whimsical ideas. Projects may be added in common areas throughout a neighbourhood, such as parks and greenspaces, and attract neighbours to gather and interact. 


If you and your neighbours want to start a project but need a few ideas to spark your creativity, check out photos and projects from Waterloo neighbourhoods and other communities.

Ideas in Waterloo:  

  • storage box art in Mary Allen Park 
  • additional park seating in your neighbourhood park
  • gaga ball pit in Auburn Park 
  • community message boards in St. Moritz Park, Pinebrook Park, University Downs Park, and more
  • community art fish installation in Mary Allen Park 

Other ideas to get inspired:

  • bike fix-it station
  • ping-pong table
  • pop-up park
  • fairy garden
  • compost program
  • park activation kits

Partners in Parks

The Partners in Parks program provides an opportunity to make a difference in your neighbourhood park though environmental projects and community improvements. To learn more about this program and guidelines, please visit the City of Waterloo Environment webpage.

Below are some projects community members have done through the Partners in Parks program:

  • trail mulching
  • litter clean-up
  • community planting
  • invasive species management
  • birdhouse maintenance and monitoring
  • little free libraries
  • community message boards

Getting started

Every placemaking project is unique, so steps and processes will vary based on the idea and individuals involved. If you are interested in planning a placemaking project in your neighbourhood, reach out to to discuss your idea. Also, check out the list of how-to guides for some helpful tips and inspiration.

Reminder: neighbourhood grants are available to help fund projects of all scales. Grants range from $50 to $7,500. Learn more about funding and talk to us about your idea!