Schoolyard parks: how the establishment of a formal partnership between the Toronto District School Board and the City of Toronto to green schoolyards can increase access to public park space across the city.
thesisposted on 25.05.2021, 07:15 by Marika Franko
Many built-up and high-density cities such as the City of Toronto are beginning to look at new strategies to increase parkland at a time when land is scarcer and more expensive to acquire. Schoolyards have been identified as underutilized public resources since many of them are deteriorating and predominantly asphalt. Some cities have established initiatives that revitalize public schoolyards into green spaces for student and community use, defined generally as ‘schoolyard parks’. Such initiatives are based upon public-private partnerships between city governments, school boards, park departments, and other stakeholders. This paper uses spatial analysis to estimate how much parkland Toronto District School Board schoolyards could contribute to Toronto’s park system if they were converted to schoolyard parks. It also reviews four schoolyard park programs in different cities to determine what kind of program structure would best suit Toronto, and it provides recommendations on how to implement such an initiative. Key words: schoolyards, parks, green spaces, partnership, underutilized schools