July is Parks Make Life Better month, which highlights local parks, recreation, trails, open space, and facilities as critical infrastructure for Californians impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
As part of Parks Make Life Better month, the Los Angeles County Department of Parks and Recreation is launching re:Play, an unprecedented initiative to invest nearly $17,000,000 in the County’s most historically underserved, highest-need communities, as designated by the Countywide Park Needs Assessment.
Re:Play will revitalize more than 75 aging play areas in 30 parks across the County. The initiative will directly impact over 1,000,000 people living near a County park, including hundreds of thousands of people living in poverty. These improvements will transform play areas throughout several unincorporated communities including Lennox, Florence-Firestone, East Los Angeles, Littlerock, Rowland Heights, Willowbrook, and West Athens.
Re:Play is made possible by the California voter’s passage of the Proposition 68: California Drought, Water, Parks, Climate, Coastal Protection, and Outdoor Access for All Act in 2018 was an important step to correct decades of insufficient investments in parks, particularly in high-need vulnerable communities. The California Department of Parks and Recreation’s Proposition 68 Per Capita Grant Program provides funding to local government agencies to support the rehabilitation, creation and improvement of local parks to address equitable access to quality parks and outdoor recreation.
“I am incredibly excited to announce re:Play, thanks to the support of California State Parks and the Proposition 68 grant program, as a way to renew, refresh, restore, replace, and revitalize play areas at County parks, specifically located in vulnerable communities. This funding will allow LA County Parks to invest in play spaces for youth and will bring to life our mission to serve as stewards of parklands, build healthy and resilient communities and advance social equity and cohesion. As the COVID-19 pandemic has reminded us, parks are vital to the emotional, social and physical wellness and vitality of our communities. There’s never been a better time for LA County Parks’ re:Play initiative to directly support our most vulnerable youth and neighbors,” said Los Angeles County Department of Parks and Recreation Director Norma E. García.
According to researchers, park renovations such as those planned with the re:Play program can dramatically increase population health outcomes and create safer, more welcoming places for people to engage in a healthy activity.
For more information about State Parks’ Per Capita Program click [here].
About L.A. County Parks and Recreation
The Los Angeles County Department of Parks and Recreation manages 183 parks and operates a network of 70,079 acres of parkland, 475 sports amenities such as futsal, basketball, tennis, lawn bowling and multipurpose fields, 42 swimming pools, 15 wildlife sanctuaries, 10 nature centers that serve as a refuge for over 200 animals, 14 lakes – 3 of which are boating and swimming lakes, 5 equestrians centers, more than 210 miles of multi-use trails for hiking, biking, and horseback riding, and the largest municipal golf system in the nation, consisting of 20 golf courses. The department also maintains four botanical centers: The Los Angeles County Arboretum and Botanic Garden, the South Coast Botanic Garden, Descanso Gardens, and Virginia Robinson Gardens. The department also owns and operates the iconic Hollywood Bowl and John Anson Ford Amphitheatre, which are jointly managed with the Los Angeles Philharmonic Association, providing County residents with valuable entertainment and cultural resources.