Posted on June 11, 2015 by Angelina Horn
Each month, City Parks Alliance names one “Frontline Park” as a standout example of urban park excellence, innovation and stewardship from across the country. The program identifies city parks that find innovative ways to meet the unique challenges faced as a result of shrinking municipal budgets, land use pressures and urban neighborhood decay. In recognition of its partnerships and community capacity building, Mestizo-Curtis Park has been named a Frontline Park.
Built in 1868, Mestizo-Curtis Park is the oldest park in the city of Denver, boasting mature trees, aged red sandstone paths, and some of the best views of the city’s skyline. Located in a district close to downtown and other commercial corridors, the park has grown and changed with Denver, hosting everything from the city’s first playground to massive political rallies. In 1998, the word Mestizo (“a mix of cultures”) was added to the name in order to better reflect the diversity of the surrounding neighborhood.
Filed under: crime & safety, facilities, funding, partnerships, programming, renewal | Tagged: denver, Five Points, Frontline Parks, Mestizo-Curtis Park, TPL | Leave a comment »
Posted on August 21, 2014 by Kathy Blaha
Earlier this month, more than 30 park professionals from the US and Canada were hosted by Denver Parks and Recreation Department in collaboration with City Parks Alliance for a tour of their park system. Eighteen cities were represented, including teams from Los Angeles and Pittsburgh.
Photo courtesy of Hope Gibson
The Denver team put on a first class demonstration of their expertise in planning, design, construction and programming – from the smallest neighborhood park to Red Rocks Amphitheater, a part of Denver’s mountain parks system – and in every case showing us how a twenty-first century city parks department operates: seamlessly.
From the neighborhood partnerships to the collaboration with their own city departments to alliances with social service providers, arts and music organizations, and other parks programmers, Denver’s parks department uses and leverages all the value that parks offer and its mission can muster. Citywide partners like the Trust for Public Land – perfectly exemplifying its urban mission – and the Colorado Health Foundation are working closely with the department on many of its projects; as are local developers, transit, and bicycling partners. On some of our park visits it was hard to tell who worked for whom; in fact, most simply said they worked for the parks.
Filed under: economics, facilities, funding, green infrastructure, health, maintenance/management, partnerships, planning, programming, transportation | Tagged: City Parks Alliance, Colorado, denver, Denver Parks and Recreation, Kathy Blaha, TPL | Leave a comment »
Posted on July 30, 2014 by Angelina Horn
Each month, City Parks Alliance names one “Frontline Park” as a standout example of urban park excellence, innovation and stewardship from across the country. The program identifies city parks that find innovative ways to meet the unique challenges faced as a result of shrinking municipal budgets, land use pressures and urban neighborhood decay. In recognition of its innovative practices in environmental education programming, Washington Park has been named a Frontline Park.
“The Urban Ecology Center first came across City Parks Alliance as the ‘go to’ place to learn and share best practices for urban parks and are deeply honored that our Washington Park branch has been recognized on the national scale,” said Beth Fetterley Heller, Senior Director of Education and Strategic Planning for the Urban Ecology Center. “Washington Park is a gem in the heart of Milwaukee that has seen amazing revitalization in the past decade. This award belongs to the community, as we could not have created a safe place for children and families to learn and play without deep engagement from community partners, businesses, neighbors and supporters.”
Filed under: facilities, maintenance/management, programming | Tagged: education, Frontline Parks, milwaukee | Leave a comment »
Posted on March 26, 2014 by Angelina Horn
Each month, City Parks Alliance names one “Frontline Park” as a standout example of urban park excellence, innovation and stewardship from across the country. The program identifies city parks that find innovative ways to meet the unique challenges faced as a result of shrinking municipal budgets, land use pressures and urban neighborhood decay. In recognition of its unique approach to partnerships and green infrastructure, Joe Taylor Park in Grand Rapids, MI has been named a Frontline Park.
“The completion of Joe Taylor Park was a major milestone for our community and set the stage for us to have critical conversations about sustainable park design, equity and access, maintenance and funding, and partnership development,” said Steve Faber, Executive Director of Friends of Grand Rapids Parks.
“We selected Joe Taylor Park as a Frontline Park because it exemplifies the power of urban parks to build community and make our cities sustainable and vibrant,” said Catherine Nagel, Executive Director, City Parks Alliance. “We hope that by shining the spotlight on Joe Taylor Park, we can raise awareness about the ways investment in our nation’s urban parks pays off.”
Filed under: crime & safety, facilities, green infrastructure, maintenance/management, partnerships, renewal | Tagged: Frontline Parks, Grand Rapids, stormwater | Leave a comment »
Posted on February 25, 2014 by Kathy Blaha
Executive Director Holly Leicht’s last day with New Yorkers for Parks was January 10. She has been appointed by U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Secretary Shaun Donovan to serve as Regional Administrator of HUD Region II, which comprises New York and New Jersey. In her new role, Leicht will be instrumental in carrying out ongoing Hurricane Sandy recovery efforts.
Last month I had a chance to talk with Holly about public-private partnerships in New York, the new mayor, and the work of New Yorkers for Parks. I’m glad I did, as her new job will take her far beyond park boundaries and the work of the more than 100-year old New Yorkers for Parks (NY4P). Founded in 1908 because there were not enough resources for children’s play in the city, it’s only been within the last two decades that research to substantiate advocacy has become an important part of what they do.
New Yorkers for Parks
Around the time that the Bloomberg administration took office in 2002, the former Parks Council took on its new name and broader mission. “But,” says Holly, “one issue that has crossed our 100 years is that we are a watchdog on alienation issues – protecting parkland all the way back to the Moses era. We work to maintain the ‘public’ in public parks.”
Holly arrived at NY4P in 2011 just as NY4P was solidifying its reputation for airtight research and reporting on the city’s parks, essentially creating a database that now supports the efforts of both citizen advocates and elected officials. Continue reading
Filed under: facilities, maintenance/management, partnerships | Tagged: Kathy Blaha, new york, New Yorkers for Parks, NY4P, P3s, public-private partnerships | Leave a comment »