by A Loukaitou-Sideris, L Levy-Storms, L Chen, M Brozen

Journal of the American Planning Association 82(3): 236-251


This article looks at the park needs and preferences of low-income, inner-city seniors in hopes to develop senior-friendly neighborhood parks. Parks have been found to improve quality of life and can give seniors access to green spaces. To understand the park needs and preferences of seniors the authors conducted a literature review and held focus groups with low-income, ethnically diverse seniors in an inner-city neighborhood in Los Angeles (CA). The seniors were asked to expand on their preferences, barriers, and challenges regarding their use of neighborhood parks. Study participants were concerned with safety and security, crime, unsafe walkways, and cleanliness of the local parks. Other studies have found seniors have similar concerns about their neighborhood parks. Park planners and designers should have seniors in mind when designing neighborhood parks and programming. Seniors are in a position to benefit from the development of senior-friendly programming, “seniors-only” parks, promotion of park security and safety, and the offering of open and green space.

Region: Los Angeles, California
Publication Type: Journal article
Keywords: contact with nature, design, greenspace, human health and well-being, parks, and safety