A 10-Minute Walk to a Park for Your Health and Well-Being
Do you live within a 10-minute of a walk? If you do, you should consider yourself fortunate because not everyone does. Access to parks and other green spaces is essential to our physical and mental health and well-being, especially now.
In this article, Los Angeles County park planner Clement Lau discusses the 10-Minute Walk Campaign which is a nationwide movement to ensure that everyone has safe access to a quality park or green space within 10 minutes of home by the year 2050. The campaign is led by the Trust for Public Land in partnership with the National Recreation and Park Association and the Urban Land Institute. Lau explains how the Los Angeles County Department of Parks and Recreation (DPR) is advancing park access and equity in the unincorporated community of West Athens-Westmont. Specifically, Woodcrest Play Park, an innovative project involving the conversion of an underused area at a local library to a brand new park, has helped to increase the percentage of residents within walking distance of a park from 35 to 57 percent. The park was only made possible through a collaborative effort between DPR and Los Angeles County Public Library, and exemplifies the type of creative partnership that is needed to provide new public spaces where residents can exercise, recreate, and relieve stress close to home.
The article also encourages park planners to adopt an intersectional approach to park planning that requires us to look beyond park boundaries, and coordinate and collaborate with partners to address important factors like safety, land use, and transportation that affect how and whether residents travel to and use existing and future parks. For further reading about this approach, please read this related article, published by Parks and Recs Business magazine in January.
For APA members, access the article at the link below. Non-members may read the article in .pdf form here.