Changing America reported that residents with lower incomes are less likely to find green space nearby in their neighborhoods in several major U.S. metro areas. But American cities have started addressing long-standing disparities in access to parks and green space, new research finds. A report from the City Parks Alliance showcases cities that are leading the way in distributing funding for parks more equitably, using data-driven approaches.
The research, published on Tuesday, includes recommendations and seven case studies of cities that have made equity in park funding a priority. These cities include San Francisco and L.A. County, Calif.; Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, New York City, Minneapolis and Detroit.
Catherine Nagel, City Parks Alliance executive director, says, “There’s been a greater awareness of the unintended consequences of many of the linear parks, which inadvertently have contributed to rising real estate values around them. I think cities are really trying to figure out how they pay more attention to neighborhoods … [without] driving further displacement.”
The recommendations of the report include getting leaders from one or more sectors of the city to champion, explain the need for and work toward better equity in parks funding. In some of the cities featured in the report, it was the city’s parks and recreation department that led the effort, but in others, it was the mayor or nonprofit sectors that play a role. Read more