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Parks & Recreation

Healthy Parks, Healthy Portland

Phone: 503-823-PLAY (7529)

Fax: 503-823-6007

1120 SW Fifth Ave., Suite 1302, Portland, OR 97204

4. Access and Equity

Access and Equity


Improving access to parks and recreation programs, thereby expanding equitable outcomes, is key to building a healthy community. Portland Parks & Recreation continues an emphasis on access to parks, natural areas and recreation program set out by Parks 2020 Vision, while renewing focus on providing opportunities for underserved communities. Below are some of the key performance measures we are using to measure our progress in achieving goals within this area. A summary table is provided along with more detailed interactive charts below.

Goals and Summary of Progress 

  • Provide equitable access to parks and natural areas within walking distance for all residents.
  • Improve recreation opportunities for underserved communities
Progress Toward Target Performance Measure 2012 2013 2014 2015 Target
Minor Progress Percentage of households within a .5 mile of a park or natural area 79% 80% 80% 80%  100%
No Change Percentage of households living within 3 miles of a full service community center 69% 70% 69% 69% 100%
Minor Progress Percentage of residents who rate neighborhood closeness to parks as good or very good 83% 85% 84% 84% 85%
Progress Percentage of residents who visited a park at least once in the last year 88% 88% 88% 90% 100%
Progress Employees of color as a percentage of FTEs 15% 15% 16% 18%
28%
Progress Employees of color as a percentage of all employees 24% 27% 27% 28% 28%
Progress Female employees as a percentage of all FTEs 37% 35% 36% 38% 50%
Progress Female employees as a percentage of all employees 54% 54% 55% 56% 50%
Minor Decline Park acres per 1,000 residents 19.5 19.5 19.4 19.4 19

Park Access

The Parks 2020 Vision identifies a goal that 100% of Portlanders are within ½ mile of a Park or Natural Area. The charts below identify progress made since 2006. Certain areas of Portland such as East and Central NE continue to lag behind other part of the city. These are the areas that continue to be focus points for new development.


Neighborhood Closeness to Parks

Not surprisingly, neighborhoods such as East Portland that lack park access rate their closeness to parks much lower when compared to other neighborhoods in the City. Overall, 84% of City residents rate their closeness to parks as good or very good. The data below is from the City Auditor’s annual resident survey


Community Center Access

The Parks 2020 Vision identifies a goal that 100% of Portlanders are within 3 miles of a full service Community Center. A full service Community Center includes a gymnasium, fitness and classrooms, and a pool. The charts below identify progress made since 2006.


Frequency of Park Visits

Since 2010 the percentage of residents visiting a park on a weekly basis has increased by 5%. Residents in East Portland continues to lag behind other parts of the city in their frequency of park visits.


Parks Acres Per 1,000 Residents

The Parks 2020 Vision identifies a goal that Portland maintains a service level of 19 acres per 1,000 residents. The charts below indicate that investments in the park system have allowed the city to maintain overall service levels at or near the goal established by the Park 2020 Vision. However, as noted above, many geographic areas of the City still remained unserved.


Employee Demographics

PP&R employed a total of 3,369 employees in FY 2015, including, 2,909 part-time seasonal staff. Extensive efforts are being made to make sure PP&R’s workforce is reflective of all communities, particularly communities that are the most underserved in our community. The tables below provide an interactive look at progress made in the diversifying the work force over the past five years.


Grants and Donations

The Parks 2020 Vision identified a goal to increase the support PP&R receives from outside funding resources to 10% of total bureau expenditures.  As of 2015 2.3% of PP&R’s total expenditures were supported from outside grants and donations. This only includes funds recorded in the City’s financial system. There was a decline in grant revenue from 2014 to 2015, but recent grant awards suggest that this number will increase in future fiscal years. The charts below provide more details as it relates to specific dollars from grants versus donations. 


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