Investment in public facilities – whether in transportation, water treatment, education or open space – is an influential dynamic in urban real estate markets. A prominent voice on the interaction between park amenities and property values is Dr. John Crompton, Distinguished Professor of Recreation, Park and Tourism Sciences at Texas A&M University. John is author of fifteen books on this and related subjects, and has written a multitude of articles exploring the economic impact of green spaces.
In addition to his analytic work at the university, John was elected to the College Station City Council in 2006. I reached him in College Station for an interview yesterday, focusing on the challenges associated with understanding the relationship between public investment in parks and healthy tax base.
Notably, John’s list of publications is growing this month, with the release of his recent book, “Community Benefits and Repositioning: The Keys to Park and Recreations’ Future Viability.” The publisher’s notes describe the content, which promises to be powerful for public and private interests working to leverage the economic and other benefits of open space:
Crompton demonstrates that the success of park and recreation agencies in securing tax funding will depend on the extent to which they are perceived by elected officials to contribute to alleviating high priority community problems. He identifies nineteen community-wide benefits that park and recreation services can deliver and provides a concise three-page executive review which summarizes the scientific findings supporting each of those claims.
Listen to a seven-minute excerpt here; the file is nearly 1MB.
Photo of Amsterdam Museumplein courtesy of Jos Mecklenfeld.