"Urban Green" explores new and innovative ways for 'built out' cities to add much-needed parkland. After first exploring the question of why urban parks are needed, Peter Harnik looks at how much parkland is truly possible and where specific investment can go. Among the book's many examples and practical solutions are reusing the land from defunct factories to sharing schoolyards, from decking parks over highways to allowing more activities in cemeteries, from eliminating parking lots to uncovering buried streams, and more. While no strategy alone is perfect, and each has its own set of challenges, collectively they suggest a path toward making cities more beautiful, sociable, fun, ecologically sound, and successful.
Peter Harnik is director of the Center for City Park Excellence at the Trust for Public Landand author of Inside City Parks, a book about the park and recreation systems of the 25 largest U.S. cities. In 2003, his research resulted in The Excellent City Park System: What Makes it Great and How to Get There. Previous to that, he was co-founder of the Rails-to-Trails Conservancy.