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For cities or organizations interested specifically in the benefits provided by their urban parks, The Trust for Public Land has developed two tools to measure the environmental services of public parks.

Boston Commons. Credit: Michael Karshis

Boston Commons. Credit: Michael Karshis

  • Park Value Calculator (PVC) allows users to calculate the annual monetary value of city park systems. The calculator looks at seven elements of a park: property value, tourism, direct use, health, community cohesion, clean water and clean air. This tool has been used by park managers in several big cities to help inform park management and policies. The results from the calculator can also be used as an advocacy tool to ask for more parks funding at the local, regional and even national level.
  • ParkScore uses geographic information system (GIS)-based data to measure park performance in the 40 largest U.S. cities and ranks them on a 0-100 scale. A city’s rating is based on park acreage as a percentage of the total city, investment in park system per resident and accessibility for residents.

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 Section III: Urban Forest Assessment Tools