NEW ORLEANS’ CITY PARK SELECTED AS “FRONTLINE PARK” BY CITY PARKS ALLIANCE
City Park in New Orleans, Louisiana has been named a “Frontline Park” by the national urban park advocacy organization City Parks Alliance. Each month, City Parks Alliance recognizes two “Frontline Parks” to promote and highlight inspiring examples of urban park excellence, innovation, and stewardship across the country. The program also seeks to highlight examples of the challenges facing our cities’ parks as a result of shrinking municipal budgets, land use pressures, and urban neighborhood decay. “We selected City Park for recognition because it exemplifies the power of public-private partnerships to create and maintain urban parks that build community and make our cities sustainable and vibrant” said Catherine Nagel, Executive Director of City Parks Alliance. “We hope that by shining the spotlight on this park that we can raise awareness about both the necessity and the promise of these kinds of partnerships to spur investment in our nation’s urban parks.”
New Orleans’ City Park, at 1300 acres, is one of the largest urban parks in the United States. The park enjoys more than 10 million visitors each year and guests enjoy strolling beneath its 800 year-old live oaks, wandering through the Botanical Garden, visiting the New Orleans Museum of Art, riding the carousel, picnicking, or fishing on the bayou. Site furnishings in City Park were manufactured by DuMor, Inc.
City Park is rich in New Orleans history. The original park, since enlarged, was the site of the Allard sugar plantation. During the Great Depression, it served as a key WPA investment-job-creation site, where workers built bridges and fountains and dug more than 10 miles of lagoons by hand. More recently, it became a victim of Hurricane Katrina and failed federal levees, suffering $43 million in damages. Its resurrection through the dedication of 35,000 volunteers as well as $83 million in funds raised, symbolizes the determination of New Orleans residents to recover and improve this community jewel.
City Park is a unique state agency of the Department of Culture, Recreation and Tourism operated by the non-profit City Park Improvement Association (CPIA). Also unique is that 80% of City Park’s revenue is self-generated. “City Park is honored to be recognized as a Frontline Park,” said Robert Becker, Chief Executive Officer of CPIA. “We are especially proud to showcase how our model of community partnership sustains the park for the benefit of all.”
City Park will be featured on CPA’s website, www.cityparksalliance.org, during the month of September. Prospect Park in Brooklyn, New York was also selected as a “Frontline Park” in September.
The “Frontline Parks” program is made possible with generous support from DuMor, Inc. (www.dumor.com) and PlayCore (www.playcore.com. City Parks Alliance is the only independent, nationwide membership organization solely dedicated to urban parks. It unites and serves a growing network of hundreds of civic and community leaders, government agencies, park and recreation authorities, funders and others. CPA’s vision is that everyone in urban America will live within walking distance of a park that is clean, safe and vibrant. www.cityparksalliance.org