PARKners improve physical park spaces and the environment

Four people play basketball at Govalle Neighborhood Park

Photo Courtesy of Elizabeth McGuire for Austin Parks Foundation

The 2020-2023 renovation of Govalle Neighborhood Park included a new playground, safety lighting, resurfacing and lighting for the basketball court, a softball field backstop, and new connection paths. Austin Parks Foundation collaborated with Austin Parks and Recreation to fund, design, and build these improvements.

This blog series explores Austin Parks and Recreation's partnerships, or PARKnerships, through the Community PARKnerships Program. Our last post asked the question, "How do PARKners help Austin’s parks?"

Today we'll focus on two ways that PARKners serve Austin.

PARKners improve our physical park spaces

Austinites have brilliant ideas to make our parks more accessible and vibrant. In many cases where the City of Austin doesn’t have the means to act on those ideas, PARKners step up to turn them into reality!

In cooperation with the City, PARKners…

  • Install playgrounds, benches, and other features
  • Build and maintain trails
  • Pick up litter
  • Run community gardens and food forests
  • Alert the City to upkeep needs
A soccer game on the mini pitch at Wooldridge School Park

Photo courtesy of 4ATX Foundation

Soccer players face off at the Wooldridge School Park mini pitch. 4ATX Foundation, the nonprofit arm of Austin FC, partnered with Austin Parks and Recreation to build this mini pitch and two others at Civitan Neighborhood Park and Dove Springs District Park. All mini pitches are free and open to the public. In fiscal year 2022, PARKners put over $13 million into parks in the form of volunteer labor and capital improvements—permanent structural changes that make the space better. 

PARKners care for the environment

All Austinites win when our parks are green and clean. Park visitors enjoy beautiful, well-maintained spaces. Healthy trees and plants clean our air, protect our water supply, and reduce heat islands. 

In cooperation with the City, PARKners…

  • Plant native plants to create healthier ecosystems
  • Remove invasive plants that threaten biodiversity
  • Care for trees and other plants through mulching, weeding, and more
  • Create healthy habitats for pollinators and other wildlife
An Ecology Action of Texas volunteer waters plants in their nursery.

Photo Courtesy of Ecology Action of Texas

A volunteer waters sprouts at Ecology Action of Texas’ nursery at Circle Acres Nature Preserve, which produces thousands of native plants a year. Ecology Action places these young plants to improve biodiversity in the preserve and in Roy G. Guerrero Colorado River Metropolitan Park. With the help of thousands of volunteers, PARKners planted over 1,400 trees and collected over 41 TONS of trash in Austin parks in the City’s fiscal year 2023!

Stay tuned for more blog posts, exploring what our partners, or PARKners, do for Austin.