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'Bold new vision': Mayor Craig Greenberg, Parks Alliances of Louisville announce action plan

According to the news release, 55 percent of parks in the metro are in “poor” or “fair” condition.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Mayor Craig Greenberg and the Parks Alliance of Louisville unveiled the Parks for All Action Plan on Wednesday.

According to the news release, the plan is a "comprehensive, long-term roadmap to build equity and excellence in Louisville’s public park system which includes 120 parks, 14 community centers, pools, golf courses, greenways, parkways, and two historic homes."

Officials say the 15-year initiative calls for steadily increasing funding for the park system to reach the national average for similarly sized cities.

“Unfortunately, some of the neighborhoods that could benefit the most from great parks and recreation services have seen the least investment," Greenberg said. "Today, we pledge to change that with this bold new vision.”

According to the news release, 55 percent of parks in the metro are in “poor” or “fair” condition -- due to Louisville Metro Park System having to deal with underfunding in capital, operating and personnel resources.

Officials created a city-wide poll asking residents what they wanted to see from their parks. Of the 900 respondents, officials say 86 percent said they wanted Louisville to invest more resources in parks. 

The respondents wanted most funds to go to rehabilitating what the parks already have, then better daily maintenance, recreational programming and capital investment in new designs and amenities. 

The main aspects of the Parks for All Action Plan are:  

  • "Dedicate more financial resources over time to deliver fundamental park and recreation services."
  • "Utilize data to allocate funds equitably. By combining park condition data and community context data, parks in neighborhoods with the greatest need are prioritized for early investment. As a result of more investment in maintenance, rehabilitation, recreational programming, and capital projects, parks in all neighborhoods will see some degree of improvement, but substantial funding will flow first to parks in the neighborhoods that need it most."
  • "Restructure the Louisville Parks and Recreation Department’s policies, practices, and operations to reflect national best practices, support equitable investments, and provide quality service delivery."
  • "Better utilize our network of community centers to deliver recreational programming with budgets distributed more equitably to provide greater resources to neighborhoods with greater needs. Over time, restructure the centers into a three-tiered system—Neighborhood, Community, and Regional Centers—with expanded hours and staff to deliver more robust services. And because only one site was built to function as a recreational center, explore rehabbing or building new centers to fill gaps."
  • "Adopt a coordinated strategy among park non-profits to amplify impact. A consortium of the Parks Alliance, Olmsted Parks Conservancy, and Wilderness Louisville will be established to ensure shared goals and strong coordination with Louisville Parks and Recreation."

For more information about the Parks for All Action Plan, please click here

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