Canadian City Parks and Inclusion

A path wanders through a dense woodland. It has a fence of heavy timbers on each side of the path. Canadian city parks go for inclusion.The amount of space required for physical distancing due to COVID-19 highlights how valuable our public space is. An important point raised in the 2020 Canadian City Parks Report. Parks form a critical backbone of community infrastructure particularly in times of stress. However, not everyone feels welcome and respected in public space. There are systemic inequities related to race, class, gender, sexual orientation, and ability. So more parks and open streets aren’t the answer to these issues, particularly at this time of a pandemic. 

The City Park Report can also be read as a guide with sections with five themes:

Each theme has an Overview, Data, and Stories. The report is based on 25,000 responses to the Park People‘s 2019 report.  

The Inclusion section begins with the issue of homelessness and displacement. Not something usually thought of under this heading. However, they have some interesting responses to this issue from a parks perspective. People with disability get a separate sub-section. And, of course, as usual, this topic appears at the end of the report. 

Nicely presented, but fiddly to access, back and forth for the different sections. The Executive Summary provides an overview of the report.

A separate study, Participatory planning for the future of accessible nature, extends the thinking in this report. Available from Tanfonline or request a copy of the paper on ResearchGate


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