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An Investment that Pays: The Economic Benefits of Parks and Open Space

2009
Authors: Erica Gies
Organizations/Sources: The Trust for Public Land
This report reviews the literature, including case studies, dealing with the economic benefits of creating parks, preserving working land, preserving land prone to flooding, conserving ecosystem benefits, and preventing sprawl development. Parks and preserved lands boost land values and property taxes, attract residents and businesses, encourage economic development, boost the economy of surrounding areas, save money over some types of development, preserve ecosystem services, and reduce health care costs. One example given in the paper is how New York used $1.2 billion to restore and protect natural land in New York City’s watersheds, which prevented the need to build a $6-$8 billion water filtration plant.
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Last Modified
Jul 03, 2019
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5226 times

Economic Impact of National Parks

2011
Organizations/Sources: Headwater Economics
Headwaters Economics created this interactive web page to show how protected public lands such as national parks can play an important economic role for local communities. The web-based tool lists visits, non-local spending, and the number of jobs created in gateway communities for each of the National Park Service units. The greatest value of natural amenities and recreation opportunities often lies in the land’s ability to attract and retain people, entrepreneurs, their businesses, and the growing number of retirees who locate for quality of life reasons.
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Last Modified
Aug 05, 2015
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3608 times

How Much Value Does the City of Philadelphia Receive from Its Park and Recreation System?

2008
Organizations/Sources: The Trust for Public Land
In 2007, Philadelphia’s park system provided the city with $23.3 million in increased tax revenue, $729 million in increased resident wealth, $16 million in savings of governmental expenditures and $1.15 billion in resident savings. This includes benefits from parks enhancing the value of nearby properties, tourist spending, decreased stormwater treatment costs, the value of recreation that occurred at parks, health benefits from exercise done in parks, the absorption of air pollutants by the city’s trees and shrubs, and community cohesion benefits.
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Last Modified
Jul 02, 2019
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4369 times

How Smart Parks Investment Pays Its Way

2003
An extensive analysis of New York City’s parks shows that strategic investment in revitalizing parks yields significant economic returns to the city, investors and neighboring communities. While not all park investments have generated economic returns, strategic planning, effective maintenance and community involvement can lead to successful park investments that create economic revitalization. One success case provided in this study is Bryant Park, which, after a complete overhaul in the 1980s, reopened and is now a major draw for both tourists and local residents, seeing 20,000 visitors each day. Between 1990-2002, asking rents for commercial office space near the park increased between 115% and 225% as compared to increases ranging from 41% to 73% in the surrounding submarkets.
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Last Modified
Jul 29, 2015
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4753 times

Measuring the Economic Value of a City Park System

2009
Authors: Ben Welle and Peter Harnik
Organizations/Sources: The Trust for Public Land
This paper describes seven economic benefits of parks and provides a case study for each. Parks increase the property value of nearby properties; lead to increased sales tax revenue from spending by tourists who visit primarily because of a city’s parks; provide city residents with free or low cost recreation; provide residents with a multitude of ways to stay healthy; create stronger, safer and more successful neighborhoods; lower stormwater treatment costs; and reduce health care costs by absorbing air pollutants and reducing the impacts they have on residents’ cardiovascular and respiratory systems.
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Last Modified
Jul 29, 2015
Viewed
4342 times

Real Estate Impact Review of Parks and Recreation

2005
Organizations/Sources: Economics Research Association
A literature review finding that neighborhood and community parks have a potentially positive impact on surrounding residential communities. This research report finds a substantial increase in housing values near neighborhood and community parks.
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Last Modified
Jul 02, 2019
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3873 times

Smart Collaboration: How Urban Parks Can Support Affordable Housing

2009
Authors: Peter Harnik and Ben Welle
Organizations/Sources: The Trust for Public Land
This paper focuses on the role mixed-income infill housing and a network of parks can play in increasing city density, increasing access to parks for residents of all income levels, and strengthening cities. Key findings include: States can promote or reward the construction of affordable housing through the offer of funding for parks; cities can integrate the planning and creation of affordable housing and parks; private developers can build compact developments that allow for walking, affordable housing, and parkland; and community development corporations can expand their work beyond housing to include parks.
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Last Modified
Jul 02, 2019
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2894 times

The Economic Benefits of Cleveland Metro Parks

2013
Organizations/Sources: The Trust for Public Land
Study finds that Cleveland-area parks and trails enhance property values, provide recreational opportunities, improve human health, attract visitors, and provide natural goods and services such as filtering air pollutants and managing stormwater. Additionally, they support local jobs, boost spending at local businesses, and generate local tax revenue.
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Last Modified
Jul 02, 2019
Viewed
1231 times

The Economic Benefits of Denver's Park and Recreation System

2010
Organizations/Sources: The Trust for Public Land
Study calculates the economic benefits of the city's parks, including $18 million net income from tourist spending, $30 million in boosted property values, and $804,000 million in stormwater management savings.
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Last Modified
Jul 02, 2019
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1126 times

The Economic Benefits of Johnson County Park and Recreation District

2015
Organizations/Sources: The Trust for Public Land
Study analyzes the economic benefits of parks and trails in Johnson County, including boosted property values, stormwater management, tax revenues, and tourism.
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Last Modified
Sep 20, 2017
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1207 times

The Economic Benefits of Land Conservation

2007
Organizations/Sources: The Trust for Public Land
To show how a strategy of land conservation is integral to economic health, this report illustrates that parks and open space increase property tax revenue and yields a better return on investment than development. It reviews the economic benefits of farmland preservation, shows how forest cover decreases the cost of treating drinking water, enumerates the economic value of urban trees, and examines the role of parks and open space in attracting businesses and affluent retirees to a community.
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Last Modified
Jul 02, 2019
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6352 times

The Economic Benefits of Open Space, Recreation Facilities and Walkable Community Design

2010
Organizations/Sources: Active Living Research
This article reviews a sizable body of peer-reviewed and independent reports on the economic value of outdoor recreation facilities, open spaces and walkable community design. Open spaces such as parks and recreation areas can increase residential property values and property tax revenues for local governments; it is less expensive to provide roads, water and sewer services to homes in compact, walkable developments than it is to homes in large, suburban developments; and the parks and the open spaces and greenbelts offered by compact walkable neighborhoods create higher housing prices and marketing opportunities.
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Last Modified
Jul 02, 2019
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4099 times

The Economic Benefits of San Francisco's Park and Recreation System

2014
Organizations/Sources: The Trust for Public Land
Study calculates the economic benefits of San Francisco's parks, including $431 million net income from tourist spending and $122 million in boosted property values.
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Last Modified
Jul 01, 2019
Viewed
1389 times

The Economic Benefits of Seattle's Park and Recreation System

2011
Organizations/Sources: The Trust for Public Land
Study evaluates the economic value of Seattle's parks, related to property value, tourism, direct use, health, community cohesion, clean water, and clean air. The parks generate nearly $20 million in tax revenue, boost property values by $80 million, and save residents $64 million in medical costs.
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Last Modified
Jul 02, 2019
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1492 times

The Economic Benefits of the Park and Recreation System in Mecklenburg County, NC

2010
Organizations/Sources: The Trust for Public Land
Study calculates the economic benefits of the county's parks, including $19 million net income from tourist spending, $10 million in boosted property values, and $4 million in savings from reduced air pollution.
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Last Modified
Jun 21, 2019
Viewed
1414 times

The Economic Benefits of the Park and Recreation System in San Jose, CA

2016
Organizations/Sources: The Trust for Public Land
By providing park areas and access to an array of free or low-cost outdoor activities, such as biking, exercising, exploring nature, gardening, hiking, picnicking, swimming, walking, and wildlife viewing, San José generates numerous economic benefits within the local community. Parks, trails, and community centers enhance property values, provide recreational opportunities, improve human health, attract visitors, and provide natural goods and services such as filtering air pollutants and managing stormwater.
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Last Modified
Jul 02, 2019
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1328 times

The Economic Significance and Impact of Pennsylvania State Parks: An Assessment of Visitor Spending on the State and Regional Economy

2010
In 2008, Pennsylvania’s state parks hosted 33.6 million visitors who spent $738 million on their trips, which includes a $191.4 million impact from out-of-state visitors. The direct effects of this were $174.5 million in wage/salary income and 8,439 jobs and these jobs generated $354.6 million in secondary sales. This economic impact analysis of Pennsylvania’s state parks includes an overall economic analysis, a one-page fact sheet for each park and results of similar studies from other states.
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Last Modified
Jul 02, 2019
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4458 times

The Economic Significance and Impact of Pennsylvania State Parks: An Updated Assessment of 2010 Park Visitor Spending on the State and Local Economy

2012
In 2010, Pennsylvania’s state parks hosted 37.9 million visitors who spent $859 million on their trips, including $201 million in spending by out-of-state visitors. The direct effects of this were 9,435 part-time and full-time jobs; $227.2 million in wages, salaries and payroll benefits; and $360.6 million in value added benefits. This report includes both statewide and park specific analyses and a comparison the results of similar studies from other states.
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Last Modified
Jul 02, 2019
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6045 times

The Value of Open Space: Evidence from Studies of Nonmarket Benefits

2005
Organizations/Sources: Lincoln Institute of Land Policy
A review of the now quite extensive economics literature on the value of open space, this study covers more than 60 articles published in the past 25 years that use the various methodologies. The analysis focuses primarily on the value of open space in and around urbanized areas, including parks, greenbelts, natural areas and wildlife habitats, wetlands, and farmland.
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Last Modified
Jul 02, 2019
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3916 times