Schoolyards becoming community recreation spaces

City Parks Blog runs an excerpt of Peter Harnik‘s Urban Green: Innovative Parks for Resurgent Cities on schoolyard parks, spaces reserved for schoolchildren during school hours and used by the whole community at other times.  Examples cited include:

  • The Boston Schoolyard Initiative, through which about $320,000 buys a each schoolyard a new drainage system, plantings, hard surface area, play equipment, fences, decorative art, and mini-landscapes for environmental education;
  • Denver’s slightly larger Learning Landscapes, which include a field, play structures, a hard-surface court and aesthetic upgrades for about $450,000;
  • Houston’s Spark (School Park Program), which spends between $75,000 and $100,000 per site to provide modular play equipment, picnic tables, benches, outdoor classrooms, gardens, trails, native plantings, murals and mosaics.

Harnik also touches on issues of shared jurisdiction, conflicts of preferred use among different constituents, design and maintenance of built facilities.

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