(Click graphic above to read the abstract and download the Pedestrians and Bicycle Infrastructure paper.)
Why Parks are Important
In a city of nearly 1 million people, parks are essential for recreation and the quality of life. The more than 11,000 acres of green space in Indianapolis provide not only common space for free play, sports, concerts, swimming, and other public events, but also sanctuaries for quiet relaxation and the preservation and enjoyment of nature.Our parks and green spaces are vital to the continued growth of Indianapolis. Parks play an important role in defining our city, our communities and the individuals who live and work throughout Marion County.
The benefits of parks are endless - to individuals, communities, the economy and the environment.
Benefits to Individuals Parks offer opportunities to enrich the quality of life for persons of all ages and abilities. Children who participate in the many after school programs though Indy Parks benefit from a safe and enriching environment. Older adults who participate in a variety of social and recreational opportunities benefit from the social connections and interactions that are fundamental to their well-being.
Benefits to Communities Parks and recreation programs offer a multitude of opportunities to engage in arts, music and sports. A park can be a symbol of vitality and character and add to the overall quality of life within a community. Parks are more than places to recreate and relate to nature. Strong, established parks are the focal point of communities. They are places for social and cultural exchange.
Benefits to the Economy Our parks can strengthen our economy. Families build homes near parks, and parks can increase property values. Businesses move into cities after consideration of many factors including recreational opportunities and amenities that increase quality of life for their employees.
Benefits to the Environment Our environment can also benefit from our parks. Trees and open space contribute to many of lifeÕs essentials - making water clean and safe for drinking, cleaning the air and returning pure oxygen to the atmosphere, and providing habitat for wildlife.
Parks, through their natural environment keep us alive. Their beauty inspires and renews us. Preserving and protecting our parks will help build and sustain a healthy, vibrant, growing community.