Union Bank of California Gives $500K for Urban Parks

San Francisco, CA, 1/19/2007: Union Bank of California today announced a five-year, $500,000 gift to The Trust for Public Land’s Parks for People-Bay Area Program. This generous gift will enable The Trust for Public Land (TPL) to create and revitalize urban parks in underserved neighborhoods, ensuring that bay area kids have a safe place to play close to home. Union Bank is committed to creating and sustaining healthy communities, and has recently increased their focus on environmental health.

“Our Foundation works to address the root causes of income disparities. It is in our best interest to support the health of all communities where we do business, and TPL’s Parks for People Program is a natural partner. TPL engages residents from lower income communities, bringing them together to effect change and improve their environment. A new park can revitalize a neighborhood and open avenues for economic opportunity,” said Carl Ballton, Senior Vice President of Union Bank of California, and President and Chief Operating Officer of the Union Bank Foundation of California.

Union Bank has supported TPL’s Parks for People Program in Los Angeles since 2001. This $500,000 gift is the first they have made to the Bay Area Program. It will be used to fund projects such as the redevelopment of Potrero Hill Park and the Community Garden at Visitacion Valley. These parks serve the urban core of San Francisco, and have tremendous potential as community resources. Union Bank’s investment will help them reach that potential.

“We commend Union Bank of California for their commitment to improving the quality of life in our state. With their generous support, TPL will be able to develop and restore parks and playgrounds in some of the Bay Area’s most densely populated areas. Together, we are working to create healthy and sustainable communities where residents of all ages have access to quality outdoor recreation,” said Reed Holderman, Executive Director of The Trust for Public Land-California.

This is the first major gift TPL has received from their newly formed Bay Area Business Council. The Bay Area Business Council is a group of local companies who help advise and fund TPL’s Parks for People-Bay Area program. Union Bank sits on the council along with San Francisco based EDAW, Swinerton Construction, SMWM, Sasaki Associates and others.

Established in 1953, the Union Bank of California Foundation serves as an agent for charitable contributions made by Union Bank of California, N.A., a wholly owned subsidiary of UnionBanCal Corporation, a publicly traded San Francisco-based bank holding company. The foundation contributes financial assistance to nonprofit institutions and organizations that enhance the quality of life and help meet the needs of the communities it serves.

The Trust for Public Land is a national nonprofit land conservation organization dedicated to conserving land for people to enjoy as parks, gardens and other natural places, ensuring livable communities for generations to come. Founded in 1972, TPL has protected more 2 million acres nationwide. Find TPL online at www.tpl.org.