Austin Park Study Tour Report

Report | Park
Austin Park Study Tour Report

From November 3 – 5, 2022, participants investigated how Austin leverages resources and partnerships to meet its growing demand for access, equity, programming, and connectivity through a carefully-curated itinerary in partnership with Austin Parks & Recreation and The Trail Conservancy. Attendees learned how Austin, with its 300+ parks, 225+ miles of trails, and 67 community gardens, provides high-quality parks and programs to all of its residents despite such explosive growth.

Austin’s Parks and Recreation Department has a rich and growing network of nonprofit partners assisting in the design, development, and programming of its parks. Tour participants learned about Austin’s innovative approaches to tackling complex equity issues and histories of under-told stories. The tour maximized networking opportunities with fellow park professionals while hearing from a diverse mix of local voices.


Thursday, 11/3

Friday, 11/4

Saturday, 11/5

Park Partnerships

Austin’s robust cadre of park and trail partners are creating unique and sustainable approaches to cross-sector partnerships. Learn about effective partnership advancements, such as the PARKnership Program, whereby community members and business partners can adopt their park, participate in volunteer days, propose enhancements at their local parks, and donate resources.

Natural Spaces and Greenbelts

Learn how Austin is protecting its natural features and connecting its communities via trails and gardens as part of its new long-range plan. See first-hand how Austin ensures that every child across the entire city has opportunities to engage with nature.

Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion

Gain knowledge about the city’s creative, data-driven approach to provide access to parks for everyone and the associated challenges of serving diverse residents with differing interests and income levels in order to achieve the city’s ambitious equity goals.

Historic Preservation and Re-Interpretation

Discover Austin’s diverse programming through a lens that explores the city’s history of segregation by way of its parks and public spaces. As the city grapples with its difficult history and its rapid growth, it aims to provide access and programming for all by learning from its past while being proactive about addressing gentrification, equity gaps, and homelessness in the future.


Hear the splashes and feel the life of Barton Springs Pool.


See the monarch butterflies of Waterloo Greenway.

Waterloo Park

Rosewood Neighborhood Park

Zilker Park

Lady Bird Lake Boat Tour


Read three unique experiences captured by attendees of the tour.


  • Apr 13, 2023

    City Parks Alliance Members Honor Earth Day with Celebrations and Service

    Katie Burns, City Parks Alliance

    Urban parks can be a significant part of Earth Day celebrations, as they provide a perfect platform for cities to showcase their commitment to sustainability t…

    Read more
  • Dec 10, 2022

    Community Is Alive in Austin

    Guest Contributor

    By Lisa Casey, Associate and Landscape Architect at Studio Outside in Dallas, Texas.  A mentor once described the next level of building professional re…

    Read more
  • Dec 8, 2022

    Exploring People, Parks, and Power in Austin with Central Texas Interfaith

    Guest Contributor

    By Grace Cotangco, Associate Program Manager, Prevention Institute  This month, I had the pleasure of participating in City Park Alliance’s Park Study T…

    Read more

Explore Gallery


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Related Resources


  • Agreement

    Partnership Configuration

    Austin Parks and Recreation Department

    Combined partnership agreements between public agencies and private nonprofits that build, renovate, maintain, the ecosystem of Austin's parks.

  • Technical Tool

    Community PARKnerships guidelines

    Austin Parks and Recreation Department

    Austin Parks and Recreation Department Community PARKnerships guide to naming, on-site dedication, and donor recognition of Austin parks.

  • Plan

    Community PARKnerships Program FY21 Year in Review

    Austin Parks and Recreation Department

    PARD, in collaboration with over 48 nonprofit partners and community groups, leveraged funds towards improvements and maintenance of parkland

  • Policy

    Partnership Policy Operating Procedures

    Austin Parks and Recreation Department

    Seeks to strengthen partnerships between the City of Austin, private organizations, volunteers, and community groups to provide recreational opportunities effi…

Sponsorship Support Provided By:

Lead Sponsor:

Supporting Sponsor:


Host City Partners:

   The Trail Conservancy | LinkedIn

Sustainability Partner:


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