May 22, 2024 - Things to Do

Atlanta is a top 25 city for parks and green spaces

A photo of a rock quarry filled with water and a pumping station with the Atlanta skyline in the background

Westside Park. Credit: Thomas Wheatley/Axios

Years of public investment to build and improve parks throughout Atlanta has bumped us up three spots to 25th in a ranking of U.S. cities with access to green spaces.

Why it matters: Access to parks builds stronger, healthier and more engaged communities. As metro Atlanta's population swells, green spaces will become increasingly vital.

How it works: Trust for Public Land's annual ParkScore study measures and ranks cities based on people's proximity to parks and the size of green spaces. It's one of the most closely watched and easy-to-digest analyses of park access.

Zoom in: Atlanta ranked 28th in 2023. Most of the recent rise is attributed to Atlanta voters approving the Moving Atlanta Forward bond infrastructure package, which included $65 million for parks.

The city also added acres of new parkland with Beltline expansion and urban forest purchases and increased annual park maintenance funding.

Follow the money: "Atlanta currently invests $249 per person on parks, twice the national ParkScore average of $124," the report says.

Yes, but: The study shows we have a lot of room for improvement.

  • To catapult up the rankings the city has to increase its park acreage by building additional and larger green spaces, TPL said.

The big picture: Washington, D.C., Minneapolis and St. Paul topped TPL's 2024 report.

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