Research Report Investing in Equitable Urban Park Systems
Emerging Funding Strategies and Tools
Matthew Eldridge, Kimberly Burrowes, Patrick Spauster
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Urban parks and green space provide significant tangible and intangible benefits for cities and their residents. However, for residents and communities to take full advantage of these benefits, parks must be accessible and high quality. Historically, low-income neighborhoods and communities of color have had faced barriers in accessing quality parks. To bridge these gaps and achieve “park equity” (all residents having reasonably equal access to quality parks), park leaders and their partners are increasingly focused on directing park investments to communities in greatest need. Drawing from interviews with park and recreation leaders and a scan of innovative practices and approaches from across the country, this report highlights funding strategies and models communities are implementing to place equity and communities at the center of park investments and funding decisions. In addition to elevating interesting, replicable examples, this report offers 11 takeaways for park leaders and their government and community partners.

How to Invest in Park Equity (factsheet)

Research Areas Nonprofits and philanthropy Neighborhoods, cities, and metros Race and equity Taxes and budgets
Tags Racial and ethnic disparities Foundations and philanthropy State and local tax issues Inequality and mobility Pay for success Parks and green space
Policy Centers Research to Action Lab