Mobile Recreation Program to Serve Park-Poor Areas

Los Angeles County launches "Park On the Move" initiative to offer recreational activities and opportunities in underserved communities.

Read Time: 2 minutes

February 13, 2022, 11:00 AM PST

By clementkhlau


An aerial view of Los Angeles at dawn, with Westlake and MacArthur Park in the foreground and Downtown Los Angeles in the background.

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It takes time and money to acquire land and build new parks. In fact, it typically takes years before new parks can be provided due to financial, bureaucratic and political issues, and other constraints. Mobile recreation may sound strange at first, but it may be an appropriate strategy to meet the urgent need for additional recreational opportunities in under-resourced areas. The typical mobile recreation approach involves recreation staff going to parking lots or other underutilized spaces in park-poor neighborhoods and bringing along play resources like basketball hoops, soccer goals, skate ramps and their associated protective gear.

In his article, Preston Shoemaker reports that the Los Angeles County Department of Parks and Recreation (DPR) has just launched "Park On the Move." The program will feature DPR staff traveling in vans loaded with equipment for skateboarding, basketball, and soccer, as well as items for other recreational activities. They will go to and set up at various locations in high park need communities, including schools, parking lots, and other spaces. This initiative is supported in part by the National Football League (NFL) through its Super Bowl Legacy Grant program.

A kick-off event was held at Jefferson Elementary School in Lennox, which is located in close proximity to Sofi Stadium in Inglewood, the site of the 2022 Super Bowl. Lennox is an unincorporated community which only has 0.2 acres of parkland per 1,000 residents, significantly below the countywide average of 3.3 acres per 1,000 residents as determined by the 2016 Los Angeles Countywide Parks Needs Assessment.    

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