of cities reported greater use of parks in the last year.
This high use may stick around, with 82% of Canadians who reported increased use of parks during the pandemic saying they expect this use to continue—or increase even more—post-pandemic.
of cities have park system master plans in place that have been updated within the last 10 years.
of cities listed aging infrastructure as a challenge, including 71% who said it was a major challenge. Insufficient operating budgets was another top challenge (89%); however, just above one third of cities listed it as a major challenge.
of cities said that COVID-19 had increased attention on parks as public health infrastructure, with 89% of those cities saying they believed this would be a long-term trend.
of Canadians said they wanted to see more public funding go towards improving parks and green spaces, including maintenance (43%), amenities and higher quality designs (27%) and community programming (23%).
of Canadians believe that their city parks and green spaces would benefit from more staff.
Ha of parkland/1000 people

This chart shows the amount of parkland for every 1,000 residents. While there is no “correct” amount of parkland per population as it depends on local context, looking at similarly sized cities can reveal common trends. For example, many of Canada’s major urban centres, such as Toronto, Montreal, and Vancouver, show lower levels of parkland per population as they deal with higher densities and development pressures—each sitting below the average for cities above 500,000 residents of 4.4 hectares per 1,000 people. Ensuring these numbers do not decrease as populations grow will be key to meeting future parkland needs.

$ in park operating budget/person

As with parkland per population, there is no “correct” operating budget amount. Tracking dollars spent per person over time helps shed light on whether budgets are keeping pace with population growth, which puts additional pressures on park systems. The average operating budget spend has remained stable for the past three years at $57 per person, despite additional pressures placed on parks last year due to COVID-19 measures. Cities have identified operational budget pressures as an ongoing challenge throughout all three years of the report.

Data not available for Montreal, Ottawa, Brampton, Laval, and Kingston.
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