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Parks Management


This page brings together a number of park and recreation management topics, including best practices information, performance measurement, safety issues, and links to other useful parks and recreation organizations.

General Management and Best Practices

The following address general parks management issues and promising practices for parks and recreation.

  • Bellevue Environmental Best Management Practices and Design Standards Manual, Parks & Community Services, 2012 - The Environmental Best Management Practices and Design Standards Manual was written in cooperation with multiple city departments to provide clear direction on standard operational procedures; to effectively communicate Parks & Community Services Department operational practices to the public; and to respond to regional, state and federal environmental issues. Proper care and maintenance, as well as the understanding of certain practices and systems, is essential in perpetuating the longevity and usefulness of city assets.  
  • City Parks Forum Briefing Papers, American Planning Association - Series of briefing papers on "How Cities Use Parks For ..." various purposes, including promoting economic development, improving public health, smart growth, etc.
  • Practice Makes Perfect, by Elizabeth Beard, Parks and Recreation, 02/2011 - How best practices help agencies reach award-winning levels of performance
  • Benefits of Parks and Recreation, MRSC webpage

Performance Measurement and Levels of Service

Local governments monitor parks and recreation performance and ensure that park and recreation levels of service are met.

Safety Topics

Safety is a central issue in parks and recreation facilities, particularly with regards to playgrounds and swimming pools.

Additional References

  • Washington State Recreation and Conservation Office - Manages grant programs to create outdoor recreation opportunities, protect the best of the state's wildlife habitat and farmland, and help return salmon from near extinction
  • Washington State Parks - Manages state parks, recreation facilities, and programs 
  • Washington Recreation & Park Association - Nonprofit whose mission is to promote excellence of current and future parks and recreation professionals through advocacy, education, networking, and training
  • Center for City Park Excellence - Trust for Public Land program that works to assure that every urban dweller has a high-value park within reasonable proximity and that every park adds value to its surrounding community

Last Modified: January 08, 2016