For people who love parks and are interested in keeping parks in the mix of municipal services during current and future budget shakeouts, Crompton has done us all a real favor. Though himself an academic, the book is highly pragmatic in identifying park uses that appeal to specific constituences or groups of users. He links park type and use to decision-making by plant relocation specialists, to senior retirees, to tourists, to child development and physical fitness advocates. Most usefully, he tells why these groups will be interested to use and to support these type of parks. In an era of falling municipal budgets, it makes the case that must be made to budget directors and dollar conscious legislaters and executives.
going beyond just making the argument, he grounds his work in the literature so if you need to go further back into the data to make your case, the references are there. the economic examples he provides should be sufficient for average users to provide a defensible estimate of the increases in property value and tax revenue associated with enhanced park services. Its a little pricey but its not rediculous and the return on investment (and time savings) from using the book makes it a good value, even if you only use it for one budget cycle.
I had a copy from the library but found this publication so compelling I bought my own copy so I could put post-its to mark the basic points and highlighting for use in hearings or meetings where i need the quote fast. As a tool, this book is not just a hammer but a Swiss Army knife of useful approaches, tactics and data for park advocates. As a bonus, he also writes so you can understand, going easy on the academic code that prevents so much useful research from wider use.
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