LOS ANGELES, CA – Today, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors unanimously approved a motion authored by Supervisor Hilda L. Solis and Supervisor Kathryn Barger to adopt the Los Angeles Countywide Parks Needs Assessment (PNA+).
The PNA+ builds on the groundbreaking 2016 Los Angeles Countywide Parks and Recreation Needs Assessment (PNA) which focused on park and recreational facilities in cities and unincorporated areas. This new detailed study reveals LA County’s unmet needs concerning environmental conservation (acquisition and protection of natural lands) and restoration (degraded lands), regional recreation, and rural recreation.
“As the author of the 2016 Los Angeles Countywide Parks and Recreation Needs Assessment, I am thrilled that we now have a holistic pathway in delivering equity-based park projects. I want to thank the many residents, community-based organizations, and State Conservancies that helped shape and inform this study,” said Supervisor Solis. “The PNA+ serves as a national model for park equity and will have a transformative impact in the region. It will help us reimagine and redefine traditional conservation – including the restoration of degraded lands such as the Puente Hills Landfill in my district.”
“The completion of this report is a milestone for our County because it helps us advance our work to promote health, play, and a sense of community,” said Supervisor Barger. “The report’s needs assessment also highlights that rural communities – like the ones I represent in the Antelope Valley – in particular need access to more waterparks, walking trails and play areas. I intend to use this report’s findings as another tool, as I advocate to bring more of those assets to my Fifth District residents. They deserve to have equal access and enjoy healthy living activities in their communities.”
“Parks, open spaces, recreation facilities, trails, and gardens are essential community infrastructure, but not all communities have access to these resources,” said Norma Edith García-Gonzalez, Director of the County of Los Angeles Department of Parks and Recreation and the Los Angeles County Regional Parks and Open Space District. “We are committed to addressing the significant park and recreation needs documented in the 2016 PNA and the 2022 PNA+ in ways that produce tangible results, provide multiple benefits, and improve the quality of life for the residents we serve. Every Los Angeles County resident in every neighborhood deserves safe and accessible parks.”
The PNA+ identifies priority areas for environmental conservation and restoration, which form the basis for a 30×30 strategy for LA County — the goal of conserving 30% of lands and coastal waters by 2030. This strategy reimagines conservation to include the traditional efforts that involve the acquisition and protection of natural lands and the restoration of degraded lands, such as brownfields, landfills, and oil fields, especially in lower-income communities of color where vulnerable populations and environmental burdens are concentrated. People of color account for 84% of the population living in priority areas for restoration, i.e. those areas with the highest environmental burdens (groundwater threat, hazardous waste, poor air and water quality, and pollution burden).
The PNA+ also identifies priority areas for regional and rural recreation based on population vulnerability, access, availability, and amenities they offer. LA County has about 1 million acres of regional recreation but there are challenges associated with access to these areas given their location, distribution, and other factors such as the lack of public transit. The rural areas have significant parkland but are lacking in certain amenities, especially water-based recreation facilities such as swimming pools and splash pads, as well as shaded seating, play areas, and walking trails. Additionally, no new local parks have been created in rural unincorporated areas since the completion of the 2016 PNA.
To view the PNA+, click here.
During today’s meeting, the Board of Supervisors also voted to advance a $2 million grant application to the California Department of Parks and Recreation General Fund Specified Grants Program for the Ruben Salazar Park Renovation Project in East LA, a very high-need area as determined by the PNA.
To view the motion related to the Ruben Salazar Park Renovation Project, click here.