This morning, the Trust for Public Land (TPL) and the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board jointly announced that Minneapolis has claimed the top spot in TPL’s national ParkScore® rankings – for the sixth consecutive year.
TPL introduced the ParkScore program in 2012 to highlight its goal of having every U.S. city resident live within a 10-minute walk of a park. That’s just one of the criteria covered by this year’s analysis of important characteristics of successful park systems, which includes access, acreage, investment, and amenities. New to the amenities category this year is splashpads and other water features, as well as restrooms. Volunteer hours and charitable contributions were added to the investment category.
Minneapolis, in ranking #1 with a score of 84.2, topped a field of America’s 100 largest cities and narrowly edged St. Paul, with a score of 82.4. A perfect ParkScore is 100.
We applaud TPL’s goal of spurring investment in parks through the ParkScore rankings. In addition to helping cities celebrate where they’ve achieved success, it also helps to identify where further resource investment can benefit the community.
Here in Minneapolis, the Park Board’s groundbreaking NPP20 effort – the historic 20-Year Neighborhood Park Plan – establishes a first-of-its-kind lens of racial and economic equity for parks improvements that’s become a model for other park systems across the country. This is an example of where careful evaluation of assets, coupled with listening to community, can result in net gains that benefit those who need it the most. For these reasons, and for its on-going demonstration of care for and commitment to the Minneapolis park system, we congratulate the Minneapolis Park Board on this achievement and are proud to be a vital partner in creating transformative parks.