Urban Green: Innovative Parks for Resurgent Cities [NOOK Book]

Overview


For years American urban parks fell into decay due to disinvestment, but as cities began to rebound—and evidence of the economic, cultural, and health benefits of parks grew— investment in urban parks swelled. The U.S. Conference of Mayors recently cited meeting the growing demand for parks and open space as one of the biggest challenges for urban leaders today. It is now widely agreed that the U.S. needs an ...
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Urban Green: Innovative Parks for Resurgent Cities

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Overview


For years American urban parks fell into decay due to disinvestment, but as cities began to rebound—and evidence of the economic, cultural, and health benefits of parks grew— investment in urban parks swelled. The U.S. Conference of Mayors recently cited meeting the growing demand for parks and open space as one of the biggest challenges for urban leaders today. It is now widely agreed that the U.S. needs an ambitious and creative plan to increase urban parklands.


Urban Green explores new and innovative ways for “built out” cities to add much-needed parks. Peter Harnik first explores the question of why urban parkland is needed and then looks at ways to determine how much is possible and where park investment should go. When presenting the ideas and examples for parkland, he also recommends political practices that help create parks.


The book offers many practical solutions, from reusing the land under defunct factories to sharing schoolyards, from building trails on abandoned tracks to planting community gardens, from decking parks over highways to allowing more activities in cemeteries, from eliminating parking lots to uncovering buried streams, and more. No strategy alone is perfect, and each has its own set of realities. But collectively they suggest a path toward making modern cities more beautiful, more sociable, more fun, more ecologically sound, and more successful.

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Editorial Reviews

Planning

"Specific, succinct, well-written, full of innovative ideas from all over—Peter Harnik's Urban Green: Innovative Parks for Resurgent Cities is all one could ask of a practical planning book."
Landscape Architecture
"With this timely and valuable book, Harnik has done a great service. Public-sector officials, planners, and designers will find it useful, but so will community activists, neighborhood groups, and anybody else who uses an urban park. Which, in a densely populated city, is just about everyone."
Urban Land

"Harnik conveys in pragmatic, no-nonsense terms what it takes to make the outdoor rooms of a city serve the true needs of their users. Fundamental questions are asked about which kinds of parks to build, how much to build, for whom to build, and where the parks should go. The answers imply new or renewed solutions and new ways of defining the very term parks."
Landscape Architecture Magazine

"With this timely and valuable book, Harnik has done a great service. Public-sector officials, planners, and designers will find it useful, but so will community activists, neighborhood groups, and anybody else who uses an urban park. Which, in a densely populated city, is just about everyone."
Oregon third congressional district - Congressman Earl Blumenauer

"Urban Green is a testament to the progress of the livable communities movement. While others cringe at urban eyesores—underutilized parking lots, vacant commercial areas, and abandoned rail lines—Harnik sees new green spaces for residents to stroll, garden, play, socialize, and enjoy their natural heritage. Best of all, he offers practical advice on politics and funding, providing community leaders with tools for turning their vision into reality."
Mayor of New York City, from his foreword - Michael Bloomberg

"Peter Harnik …reveals how the push to preserve and promote our nation's urban parks is one of the most exciting frontiers in urban planning, dramatically changing the way we think about what is possible in a 21st-century city."
Charles E. Fraser Chair for Sustainable Development - Edward T. McMahon

"Urban Green is part reference manual, part guidebook and part inspiration. It provides an unprecedented look at the re-greening of urban America. From rail trails to rooftops to landfills, Peter Harnik shows us how to find and fund green spaces for the next century."
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781597268127
  • Publisher: Island Press
  • Publication date: 4/15/2010
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 208
  • File size: 13 MB
  • Note: This product may take a few minutes to download.

Meet the Author


Peter Harnik is director of the Center for City Park Excellence at the Trust for Public Land and author of Inside City Parks, a book about the park and recreation systems of the 25 largest U.S. cities. In 2003, his research resulted in The Excellent City Park System: What Makes it Great and How to Get There. Previous to that, he was co-founder of the Rails-to-Trails Conservancy.
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Table of Contents

Foreword Michael R. Bloomberg xi

Acknowledgments xiii

Introduction 1

Part I Of Cities and Parks

Chapter 1 How Much Parkland Should a City Have? 13

Chapter 2 The Different Kinds of Parks and Their Uses 20

Chapter 3 Is It Acres, Facilities, or Distance? 25

Chapter 4 Parks and Their Competition 33

Chapter 5 Neighborhoods Are Not All Created Equal 38

Chapter 6 It's Not How Much but Who and Why 42

Chapter 7 A Process Rather than a Standard 46

Chapter 8 Stop, Look, and Listen 49

Chapter 9 Analyze and Prioritize 53

Chapter 10 Don't Forget Money and Time 56

Part II Finding Park Space in the City

Chapter 11 Buying It 63

Chapter 12 Utilizing Urban Redevelopment 70

Chapter 13 Community Gardens 83

Chapter 14 Old Landfills 90

Chapter 15 Wetlands and Stormwater Storage Ponds 94

Chapter 16 Rail Trails 98

Chapter 17 Rooftops 104

Chapter 18 Sharing Schoolyards 110

Chapter 19 Covering Reservoirs 116

Chapter 20 River and Stream Corridors 120

Chapter 21 Cemeteries 125

Chapter 22 Boulevards and Parkways 131

Chapter 23 Decking Highways 136

Chapter 24 Closing Streets and Roads 142

Chapter 25 Removing Parking 147

Chapter 26 Adding Hours Rather than Acres 154

Conclusion 159

Tables

1.1 That's Quite a Spread You've Got! (Acres of Parkland per 1,000 Persons) 15

1.2 Howdy Neighbor! (Persons per Acre of Parkland) 18

1.3 Parks for Daytimers, Too? (Commuters and Population Change) 18

1.4 Parkland for People (Acres per 1,000 People) 19

3.1 A Park Too Far? (Maximum Distance Goals) 28

7.1 How Green Is My City? (Parkland as Percentage of City) 47

11.1 The Cost of Buying Parkland 65

11.2 Developer Exactions 68

12.1 Second Time Around (Redevelopment Authority Parks) 71

14.1 Garbage In, Park Out (Landfill Parks) 91

16.1 Goodbye Train, Hello Trail (Rail Trails) 99

22.1 "Boulevardozing" Highways (Expressway to Park Conversions) 134

23.1 Out of Sight, Out of Mind (Parks Constructed Over Highways) 137

24.1 Do Not Enter (Park Roads Closed to Autos) 144

25.1 Pavement in Paradise (Parking Spaces in Parks) 148

25.2 Living on the Edge (Population Density around Parks) 153

Recommended Reading 161

Appendix 1 Population Density, Largest Cities 165

Appendix 2 Acres of Parkland per 1,000 Persons, Largest Cities 168

Appendix 3 Parkland as a Percent of City Area, Largest Cities 171

Appendix 4 Spending per Resident on Parks and Recreation, Largest Cities 174

Index 177

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