2016 NRPA Field Report Provides Look at State of the Industry for Parks and Recreation

(March 24, 2016)

National Recreation and Park Association releases key benchmarking data for park and recreation agencies

ASHBURN, Va. – March 24, 2016 – To be a leader in your industry, it is vital to know where you stand against your peers—parks and recreation is no different. The National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA) gives park and recreation professionals the data they need to be industry leaders while best serving their communities with the 2016 NRPA Field Report. This report, with its accompanying interactive and customizable online tools, is the most comprehensive resource of park and recreation data and insights in the United States.

The 2016 NRPA Field Report replaces outdated national standards with key metrics that empower park and recreation agencies to compare themselves with their peers across the United States and identify best practices. Key findings from the 2016 NRPA Field Report show that the typical park and recreation agency: 

  • Has 9.5 acres of park land per 1,000 residents
  • Has 1 park for every 2,277 residents
  • Has 7.4 staff members per 10,000 residents
  • Has operating expenditures per capita of $76.44
  • Recovers 29 percent of operating expenditures through revenue generation

The 2016 NRPA Field Report is powered from the data of more than 950 park and recreation agencies in PRORAGIS, NRPA’s benchmarking resource that assists park and recreation professionals in the effective management and planning of their operating resources and capital facilities. The report not only provides benchmarks, but shows the breadth and depth of activities and roles that local park and recreation agencies are performing. 

“Park and recreation agencies are engines of economic activity with a vital public service mission,” said Barbara Tulipane, NRPA President and CEO. “That’s why it’s important for us to provide them with key data they can use to get the support and funding they need to positively impact the lives of every community member they serve.”

The 2016 NRPA Field Report helps park and recreation professionals evaluate the performance of their agencies and understand how they relate to their peers in terms of staffing, budget, amount of park space and facilities. Combining this data with other resources such as NRPA’s Facility Market Reports, Economic Impact of Local Parks Report, and Americans’ Broad-Based Support for Local Recreation and Park Services Report can help agencies receive the support they need to provide tailored services that meet the unique needs of their community. 

View the report, interactive tables, customizable reports and corresponding infographic.  

About The National Recreation and Park Association

The National Recreation and Park Association is a national not-for-profit organization dedicated to advancing park, recreation and conservation efforts that enhance quality of life for all people. Through its network of 50,000 recreation and park professionals and citizens, NRPA encourages the promotion of healthy and active lifestyles, conservation initiatives and equitable access to parks and public space. For more information, visit www.nrpa.org. For digital access to NRPA’s flagship publication, Parks & Recreation, visit www.parksandrecreation.org.

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Media Contact:

Roxanne Sutton