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PageTest: 2.1 How to Develop Community and Neighborhood Parks

  • Overview
  • Potential Resources
  • Examples
  • References
  • Neighborhood and community parks improve physical and psychological health, enhance social interaction, and make neighborhoods more attractive places to live and work. Numerous studies have also shown that parks increase property values, reduce crime, and improve air and water quality.

    The County of San Bernardino builds, maintains, and operates regional parks, but does not have the financial resources to build and maintain community or neighborhood parks. Community and neighborhood parks are amenities that are generally provided within incorporated cities and/or master planned communities that have a homeowners� association. However, residents of unincorporated communities can develop and maintain a network of community and neighborhood parks by establishing a special district.

    A special district is a legal entity authorized under California law to provide a special service to a neighborhood or local community. The service is funded by an additional property tax assessment levied on all properties within the district�s boundaries.

    Recommended Actions for Citizens and Community Groups

    How to Establish a Special District provides recommended steps for citizens and community groups that are interested in establishing a special district.

    County Staff and County Partners that Can Provide Assistance

    The following County Departments and County partners can provide additional assistance related to community and neighborhood parks:

    � San Bernardino County, Special Districts Department
    157 West 5th Street, 2nd Floor San Bernardino, CA 92415-0450 909-387-5940

    � Local Agency Formation Commission for San Bernardino County
    215 North D Street, Suite 204 San Bernardino, CA 92415-0490 909-383-9900

  • Local citizens and community organizations that want to develop and maintain community and neighborhood parks will need to raise money to promote and raise support for the effort, and to pay for start-up expenses related to forming a special district. Potential funding resources may include:

    � Local businesses
    � Local citizens
    � Local civic and fraternal organizations (Lions Club, Rotary Club, religious organizations, etc.)
    � Foundations and philanthropists

    In addition, grant and technical assistant programs should be pursued through the following organizations:

    � The Trust for Public Land
    101 Montgomery Street, Suite 900 San Francisco, CA 94104 415-495-4014 or 1-800-714-LAND

    � National Recreation and Park District
    22377 Belmont Ridge Road Ashburn, VA 20148-4501 800-626-6772

    � California Department of Parks and Recreation
    1416 9th Street Sacramento, CA 95814 800-777-0369

    � Parks and Recreation Grant Opportunities
    701 Devonshire Drive, C-25 Champaign, IL 61820 217-487-2395

  • Several park and recreation districts have been established for unincorporated communities in San Bernardino County. The following links provide information about these special districts:

    � Bloomington Recreation and Parks District
    � Big Bear Parks and Recreation District
    � Joshua Tree Recreation and Parks District
    � Lucerne Valley Parks and Recreation
    � Oro Grande County Service Area 42
    � Wrightwood Park and Recreation District
    � Oak Glen Schoolhouse Museum and Park
    � Wonder Valley County Service Area 70M
    � El Mirage County Service Area (CSA) 70, Improvement Zone P-6
    � Hinkley: County Service Area (CSA) 70, Improvement Zone W
    � Lake Arrowhead: Mackay Park
    � Rim of the World Recreation and Park District

  • The following resources provide additional information related to parks and special districts:

    � Local Agency Formation Commission for San Bernardino County
    � San Bernardino County, Special Districts Department
    � California Special Districts Association
    � California Association of Recreation and Park Districts

    References in the Digital Library

    � What�s So Special About Special Districts, A Citizens Guide to California�s Special Districts, Senate Local Government Committee, October 2010.

    � The Benefits of Parks: Why America Needs More City Parks and Open Space, The Trust for Public Land, 2003.

Community Development Toolkit – Draft


  • How-To Guide: Parks, Recreation, and Open Space

    2.1  How to Develop Community and Neighborhood Parks
    2.2    How to Develop Local Sports/Recreation Programs
    2.3    How to Develop a Community Center
    2.4    How to Establish a Local Open Space Preservation Program
    2.5    How to Develop a Local Trails Network
    2.6    How to Develop a Plaza or Town Square
    2.7    How to Develop a Dog Park
    2.8    How to Develop a Nature Program
    2.9    How to Plan for a Parade
    2.10  How to Plan a Car Show
    2.11  How to Plan an Organized Run or Ride
  • How-To Guide: Libraries Museums, and Lifelong Learning

    3.1     How to Establish a Local Library
    3.2     How to Establish a Local Museum
    3.3     How to Build a Lifelong Learning Program
    3.4     How to Develop an Arts Program
    3.5     How to Develop an Artists Co-op Gallery
    3.6     How to Recruit Public Performances
    3.7     How to Develop a Historic Preservation Program
    3.8     How to Develop a Façade Easement Program
    3.9     How to Develop a Book Club
    3.10   How to Research Local History
    3.11   How to Conduct Oral Histories
    3.12   How to Designate Local Landmarks
    3.13   How to Record Historic Buildings
    3.14   How to Develop an Architecture Education Program for Children
    3.15   How to Provide Art and Music Education Programs
  • How-To Guide: Housing

    4.1    How to Establish Cooperative Housing
    4.2    How to Construct Homes Using Renewable Materials
    4.2      How to Develop a Neighborhood Clean-up / Work Weekend
    4.3     How to Foster Neighborhood Pride
    4.4     How to Develop a Homeowner Assistance Program
    4.5     How to Detect Mold
    4.6     How to Detect Lead
    4.7     How to Detect Asbestos
    4.7     How to Develop Temporary or Transitional Housing
    4.8     How do you Permit a Modification to your Building
    4.9     How to Improve the Energy Efficiency of your Home
    4.10   How to Make your Home Accessible
    4.11   How to Find and Hire a Contractor