In 2011 the City of Culver City and North East Trees were awarded a grant from the State of California Strategic Growth Council (SGC) for a Proposition 84 Urban Greening Planning Program for Sustainable Communities. The Planning Program provides funds to assist projects that reduce greenhouse gas emissions and provide multiple benefits.
The Culver City Green Space Plan, in partnership with Ballona Creek Renaissance and Culver City Unified School District, aims to provide passive recreational open space within walking distance of all the Culver City neighborhoods. In the past, active recreation facilities such as sport fields and play courts were given the primary focus when the city’s parks were designed, with little attention paid to passive spaces. Those passive or unprogrammed spaces present an excellent opportunity to increase the value of the parks to the broader community, enriching the park experience without reducing access to active sports fields and play courts.
This planning project will re-imagine these spaces and make the City’s parks and other open spaces more appealing to a broader segment of the local community through passive recreation. Accessibility to seniors, people with disabilities, individuals without children and children not participating in organized sports will increase the value of Culver City Parks to its residents.
Goals & Objectives
To increase the value of Culver City Parks to a broader segment of the local community through passive recreation while creating an urban environment that enhances personal and environmental health.
Make the city parks and open space more appealing and accessible to seniors, people with disabilities, individuals without children and children not participating in organized sports. Provide passive recreational open space within walking (biking, wheelchair, stroller) distance of all city neighborhoods.
Increase social engagement and join the communities that use the parks and open space through these passive recreation sites.
Plan for ecologically functional, water-wise, low maintenance spaces and monitor their success, while educating the public about environmental issues (such as water pollution, green house gasses and energy and water conservation) and promoting environmental stewardship through site-specific uses.
Use community outreach to ensure that the general public has the opportunity to be engaged in the planning process and get the community’s perspective for their specific needs and wants.
Proposed Program Schedule
Winter 2012: Community Input Phase I
North East Trees (NET) will work with high school students to gather community input at local stores, schools, and activity centers via a questionnaire designed to learn more about each specific park’s current and potential users’ passive recreation wants and needs.
Spring 2012: Community Input Phase II
After we synthesize the data gathered during Community Input Phase I, NET will hold Community Meeting One: Introduction to the Project, Community Needs for Passive Recreation, Asset Analysis of Neighborhoods. This meeting will introduce the Culver City Green Space Planning project and its goals and objectives to the community. The participants will hear about currently exists int he Culver City Parks, what the demographic make-up of the areas are nearest the parks, site analyses, and the outcome of neighborhood surveys from these areas. Initial passive recreation concepts will be presented for each neighborhood grouping.
Summer 2012: Analysis and Concept Development Phase
NET will analyze all of the data gathered via the months of community outreach and develop five design concepts that can be used in various parks throughout Culver City.
Fall 2012: Final Community Input Phase & Presentation
During Community Meeting Two: Design Refinement, NET will present the design templates for passive recreation. The team will discuss what elements were incorporated from the previous meeting, both in addressing issues and community uses of the sites. Additional comments and suggestions will be discussed, recorded and addressed. NET will incorporate this feedback into the final recommendations for passive recreation types throughout the Culver City Park system.
What is passive recreation?
Passive recreation activities (or wellness activities) are not based around sports fields and organized team sports, and they have a minimum amount of impact on a site’s environment. Other names you may have heard for Passive Recreation include Quiet Recreation, Wellness Activities, Low Impact Recreation, and Natural Recreation.
For more info, contact CCUSD or BCR, or North East Trees – www.northeasttrees.org/
Editor’s Note – I suggest some yoga.