Parks Blossom in Philadelphia
One park has just opened and four others are on track to open by the end of the year.
"How is it possible that so many new and improved public spaces are in the pipeline when the keepers of the public treasury - the city and state - are pleading poverty? Or, for that matter, when Fairmount Park's operating budget has remained unchanged since the 1980s?
Actually, public funds cover only a small part of the cost of city parks nowadays. While Fairmount Park managed to secure some government money before the recession hit, and then topped off with federal stimulus dollars, few of the new parks would be seeing the light of day without heavy underwriting from philanthropic foundations, nonprofits, and private institutions. For better or worse, outside interests have become the lead player in planning and maintaining an entire generation of what we still like to call public parks."