Americans Agree: Every Person Deserves Access to a Great Park Within a 10-Minute Walk

(September 24, 2018)

Findings published in the 2018 NRPA Americans’ Engagement with Parks Report

Ashburn, Va. (Sept. 24, 2018) — According to a recent report published by the National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA), the majority (85 percent) of Americans support efforts, such as the 10-Minute Walk campaign, to ensure every person has access to a great park within a 10-minute walk of their home. Currently, 3 in 4 Americans say they live within walking distance of a local park or other recreational facility and, on average, visit their local park and recreation facilities more than twice a month.

Distributed to 1,000 Americans ages 18+, the 2018 Americans’ Engagement with Parks Report also found public support for parks and recreation remains strong. More than 9 in 10 Americans agree parks and recreation is an important local government service. Other key highlights from the report include: 

  • Seventy-six percent of Americans are more likely to vote for local politicians who make park and recreation funding a priority.
  • Eighty-five percent of Americans consider high-quality park and recreation amenities important factors when choosing a new place to live.
  • Sixty-eight percent of survey respondents report having visited a local park and/or recreation facility within a month of participating in the survey.

“The critical value Americans place on parks and recreation is evident by the data presented in this report,” said Barbara Tulipane, CAE, NRPA president and CEO. “Not only do parks build healthy, vibrant and resilient communities, they are also powerful engines of economic activity.”

A report issued by NRPA — in partnership with the Center for Regional Analysis at George Mason University — demonstrates the vast economic impact of local parks nationwide. Operations and capital spending for local parks generates more than $154 billion in economic activity and supports more than 1.1 million jobs. This is a conservative estimate that does not capture parks’ other economic benefits:

  • Higher real estate values
  • Health and wellness benefits
  • Conservation/Resiliency benefits
  • Tourism
  • Economic development

The Americans’ Engagement with Parks Report is an annual research series from NRPA that tracks the general public’s interaction with and support for public parks. The findings provide park and recreation professionals, policymakers and other key stakeholders with insights on the importance local parks and recreation facilities play in lives of all Americans. The NRPA Research Department will release new results from the Americans’ Engagement with Parks Report each fall.

To read NRPA’s Americans’ Engagement with Parks Report, click here.

To learn more about NRPA, visit  


About the National Recreation and Park Association
The National Recreation and Park Association is a national not-for-profit organization dedicated to ensuring that all Americans have access to parks and recreation for health, conservation and social equity. Through its network of 60,000 recreation and park professionals and advocates, NRPA encourages the promotion of healthy and active lifestyles, conservation initiatives and equitable access to parks and public space. For more information, visit For digital access to NRPA’s flagship publication, Parks & Recreation, visit