87% of Burqueños are within a 10-minute walk to a park | KOB 4
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87% of Burqueños are within a 10-minute walk to a park

Eddie Garcia
June 17, 2019 05:23 PM

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — The national organization Trust for Public Land has recognized New Mexico as a big up-and-comer when it comes to public access to parks and open space.

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A press release from Albuquerque Parks and Recreation Department stated:

"Access to parks and open space in Albuquerque continues to improve as indicated by the 2019 ParkScore index from The Trust for Public Land. The results... show Albuquerque has moved up six spots from the 2018 rankings to number 34 nationally."

This kind of positive spotlight has been a long time coming according to Dave Simon, the director of the city's Parks and Recreation Department.

"We have more open space per capita than any city in America," Simon said.

According to Simon, the goal is ensuring citizens a 10-minute walk or half-mile distance to a high-quality park or green space.

In fact the city has acquired about 40 acres of new open space since last summer.

"We have a multi-pronged approach to improving accessibility to parks and open space, sometimes that may be acquiring a unique or threatened parcel of land," Simon said.

Expanding access doesn't always have to include buying up more land – Simon says there are other approaches being implemented.

"Improving a pedestrian crosswalk, building a bridge or maybe taking down a fence," Simon said.

As it stands, 87% of Albuquerque residents have fast access to park. The city hopes to make that 100% in the years to come.

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Eddie Garcia

Copyright 2019 KOB-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved

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