Funds for Oakland, CA, Park Approved

SACRAMENTO, 7/31/01 – Governor Gray Davis and the State Legislature approved $$650,000 for the Bella Vista Discovery Park in Oakland as part of the state’s 2001-2002 fiscal year budget signed today. The Bella Vista Discovery Park funds were added to the budget at the request of Senator Don Perata (D-Alameda) and Assembly Member Wilma Chan (D-Oakland).

“California is fortunate to have state leaders who care about the quality of life in our cities and about urban parks. We commend Governor Davis for approving these funds and Senator Perata and Assembly Member Chan for championing Bella Vista Discovery Park,” stated Rachel Dinno, Government Relations Director for the Trust for Public Land.

The funding will be used to establish the Bella Vista Discovery Park, which is a 1.1 acre city park located in a densely populated, culturally diverse neighborhood in Oakland’s San Antonio District.

“Our children need and deserve an exemplary park with opportunities to play and learn in a safe, beautiful and stimulating environment,” said Gillian Garro with Friends of Bella Vista Park. “The Governor clearly recognizes the importance of safe neighborhood parks.”

The funds will be used to maximize the recreational potential of the park, as well as the educational, ecological and aesthetic values of the site, which serves as the sole playground for the severely overcrowded Bella Vista Elementary School.

The renovation of Bella Vista Park will maximize the recreational, educational, and ecological potential of the park and provide open space resources for 800 school children and service over 59,000 Oakland residents.

“Governor Davis has been a champion for urban renewal and safe places for kids to play,” said Dinno. “The children’s voices were heard today and their requests are reflected in the Governor’s budget!”

The budget signed by Governor Davis includes funding for urban parks and additional recreational opportunities for Californians by expanding state parks.

The Trust for Public Land is a national non-profit land conservation organization that works to conserve land for people, to improve the quality of life in our communities and to protect our natural and historic resources for future generations. The mission of TPL’s Urban Parks Program is to improve and sustain a high quality of life in urban areas in California through the creation and preservation of natural areas, high-quality parks, playgrounds, and other recreational amenities. Founded in 1972, TPL has protected more than 1.2 million acres nationwide including the Union Point Park in Oakland.