The Trust for Public Land Makes Park Information Database and Platform Available to Millions

Parkserve™ will help local leaders evaluate urban park systems and identify places where new parks are needed most urgently

November 30, 2016
San Francisco, CA

The Trust for Public Land announced today it will unveil ParkServe™, a new, interactive platform that tracks urban park access nationwide, in spring 2017.

When completed in 2018, ParkServe will include data from 13,931 cities and towns, covering more than 80% of the U.S. population. The web-based tool will let people locate the park nearest to them, determine the percentage of residents who live within a 10-minute walk of a local park, and identify the neighborhoods most in need of new parks. When it launches next spring, ParkServe will include data from the first 5,046 cities covering approximately 45% of the U.S. population.

ParkServe builds on the success of The Trust for Public Land’s widely-acclaimed ParkScore® index, which ranks park systems in the 100 largest U.S. cities. Like ParkScore, ParkServe will be a free, publicly accessible, web-based system. Anyone can visit the ParkServe site, and after a few keyboard clicks, will receive an extraordinary amount of information and data on parks previously available only to well-funded municipal park researchers.

ParkServe visitors can also use online mapping tools such as The Trust for Public Land’s ParkEvaluator™ and custom data from ParkOptimizer™ via the ParkServe™ website, giving them an additional way to view, analyze, and consider ParkServe™ data. By zooming in on individual neighborhoods, users will be able to identify the specific areas in greatest need of additional parks.

“ParkServe democratizes park information, giving local leaders and individual residents the information they need to advocate for more parks,” said Adrian Benepe, Director of City Park Development for The Trust for Public Land.

In 2018, ParkServe™ data will be added to the United States Geological Survey (USGS) Protected Areas Database of the United States (PAD-US), adding more detail about urban parks and park systems to that valuable resource. PAD-US is widely used by land managers, researchers, and planners and these additions will help them better understand park system needs in their communities.

The ParkServe data, platform and analytics have been developed thanks in large part to Esri, which has provided technical support, data, and software to The Trust for Public Land in order to undertake this effort.

“ParkServe is one of the most exciting developments in our mission to support green infrastructure, engaging communities to identify the best locations for green space,” said Jack Dangermond, Esri founder and president of the worldwide leading developer of Geographic Information System (GIS) software and technology. “The Trust for Public Land is an exemplary GIS practitioner who has elevated the analysis of city park systems with their continued use of ArcGIS in both ParkServe and ParkScore.”

The Trust for Public Land believes that quality urban parks can address some of the nation’s largest challenges, from our public health crisis to climate change. Creating a go-to resource for quality local park data can improve the siting, design, and construction of parks that deliver multiple benefits by improving public health with new recreational opportunities, building strong communities through increased programming and public art, providing environmental benefits using green infrastructure, and spurring further investment in parks.

ParkServe™ has been made possible thanks to a transformative partnership with The JPB Foundation to support The Trust for Public Land’s goal to make the 10-minute walk the standard for urban park access and equity across the country.