New York City is home to more than 1,700 parks, 20,000 acres of forests, wetlands, and grasslands, and 300 miles of nature trails — and research shows us that the city’s parks and natural areas play an integral role in the lives of New Yorkers. In 2021, the Trust for Public Land’s ParkScore research found that 99% of New York City residents live within a ten-minute walk of a park. While a study by the U.S. Forest Service reports that 50% of New Yorkers experience nature only in city parks. Parks provide space for residents to spend time in nature, which makes us healthier and happier. And with the stresses of the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s never been more important for all New Yorkers to have access to parks and natural areas.
While nature is abundant in New York City, enjoying these natural spaces can have its own set of challenges and hurdles for city residents. Across the country, we’re seeing exciting initiatives to improve park equity and access — so what does this work look like here in New York City? Join us on December 13, as the Natural Areas Conservancy gathers local leaders from New York City-based organizations including RISE Rockaway, Word Up Community Bookstore, and the Greenbelt Conservancy to learn more about their efforts to connect diverse communities to local nature. Moderated by Josh Otero, the NAC’s Trails Community Engagement Coordinator, we’ll explore topics like park stewardship, civic engagement, and the importance of community-led environmental education and programming.
This event is free and open to the public, and will be hosted on Zoom webinar and registration is required to attend. We want to thank Con Edison for sponsoring this 2021 public event series.