In less than 20 years, San Antonio has more than tripled its acreage of park land, from 7,565 acres in 1999 to 29,692 in 2017.
Parks are considered to be "essential public services." They serve the community in many ways, from promoting public health and community engagement to providing environmental, aesthetic and economic benefits.
Access to and involvement in neighborhood parks have been strongly linked to safer neighborhoods, reductions in crime, juvenile delinquency and vandalism.
The City's proposed Parks and Recreation budget for fiscal year 2018 is $100.4 million – $1.8 million more than last year – and will also apply an "equity lens" for distribution of funds, in keeping with the city's goals to allocate more resources to areas with more need.
And earlier this year, San Antonio voters said "yes" to a 2017 bond package that includes $79,125,293 for Parks, Recreation, Open Space and Athletic Improvements.
How does a city benefit economically and socially from investment in its parks? How are parks evolving to incorporate newer technologies and better accommodate the needs of all individuals?
What new projects and improvements are in the works for San Antonio parks?
- Xavier Urrutia, director of the City of San Antonio's Parks & Recreation Department
- Mary Jane Verette, president and CEO of the San Antonio Parks Foundation
- Catherine Nagel, executive director of the City Parks Alliance
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