Does my community need a new park?

Should your community focus on building new parks or improving existing parks? Many communities struggle with this question. Of course, the best option is usually to do both, but in the short term it may be necessary to choose one over the other.

A good place to start is ParkServe®. ParkServe® is a data platform created by The Trust for Public Land’s Research and Innovation Team that helps park professionals and advocates locate areas for new parks. ParkServe® provides a ton of data about park access, size, and amenities.

To get started:
  1. Visit ParkServe.
  2. Search for your city.
  3. Scroll through the data to gain a better understanding of your city’s park system.
  4. Find out what percentage of your city lives within a 10-minute walk of a park.

A diagram demonstrating what the 10-minute walk percentage looks like on ParkServe city pages.

If close to 100% of your community lives within a 10-minute walk to a park, park access may not be a major barrier to park use, and you can focus your resources on improving existing parks. However, if this number is far below 100%, that means that many local residents live outside a 10-minute walk to a park, signaling a need for new parks.

Ready to use ParkServe to make decisions about where to locate your new parks? Great! Continue on to: Where are parks needed most?