Sustainability is one of the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board’s core values. Throughout the organization, we strive to incorporate sustainable practices into the work we perform every day, in our parks and recreation centers and in our offices. We know that our patrons value sustainability, and so do we.
To further this shared value, we are implementing the Sustainable Parks® initiative emphasizing our commitment to being sustainable in three ways every day:
- Environment – Sustain and enhance parklands, waters and urban forests.
- Economic – Develop short-term and long-term financial stability of the park system.
- Equity – Provide residents with the opportunity to improve their quality of life and well-being through outstanding parks and recreation services that are suited to their respective needs
Our goal with "3E sustainability" is to ensure lasting benefits for the community by:
- Reducing our impact on the environment.
- Being more money smart with public dollars.
- Providing opportunities for everyone to experience the benefits of Minneapolis parks and programs today and into the future.
Our 2012 Sustainable Parks® Priorities
Minneapolis Park Board Commissioners prioritized four Sustainable Parks® initiatives for immediate action.
- Increase Building Efficiency by identifying priority remediation sites and setting more stringent standards for remodeling and new construction.
- Increase the number of sustainable events by introducing Events Go Green! and piloting new Certified Green Events guidelines.
- Promote the importance of our Urban Forest and encourage community members to value and care for our trees. This year’s theme: Elmer Says, Water Trees Weekly!
- Reduce the volume of trash with a new easy-to-follow single sort recycling and composting Waste Management program in all parks and recreation centers.
Did You Know?
- Sustainable practices will be piloted at 8-10 Minneapolis Parks Special Events in 2012.
- “Certified Green” events will pop up throughout Minneapolis Parks – watch for them!
- Tree-watering bags are free on loan for Minneapolis boulevard trees 4” in diameter or smaller. Call 612-313-7710 for details.
- It costs less than $3 to water a tree every week for the growing season?
- Minneapolis Parks employees sorted over 300 pounds of trash from six recreation centers and headquarters for our 2012 “indoor waste study.”
- We discovered that 40% of recreation center “trash” was compostable and another 22% was recyclable.
- 94% of Minneapolis Parks visitors say that being sustainable is important or very important to them personally.
- 88% of Minneapolis Parks employees agree.
Sustainability is identified in our 2007-2020 Comprehensive Plan as one of five core values upon which the Park Board bases its everyday work.
A sustainability plan prepared by GreenMark was approved by the Board of Commissioners. The plan includes a strategic outline, Sustainability 2013, for implementing and enhancing sustainable practices throughout the MPRB. Implemented in concert, these efforts will help the MPRB become the park and recreation system of the future.
Five work teams are created to implement action plans around the Board's priorities for the following strategies:
- Make buildings energy efficient and reduce carbon emissions.
- Broaden the strategic application of the Urban Forest to include multiple benefits.
- Re-organize waste management strategies.
- Events go green!
- Educate residents and staff on current sustainability practices.
Sustainability Action Teams focus on four Sustainable Parks® initiatives.
The strategies for Sustainability 2013 are:
- Create the foundation to clearly articulate what sustainability means for the MPRB;
- Activate the MPRB’s existing assets in addressing issues of sustainability;
- Innovate signature projects and relationships that will help to leverage new assets, deliver higher quality services to customers and enhance the quality of life for the citizens of Minneapolis
- Communicate the MPRB’s initiatives to cement relationships with key audiences, attract public and staff buy-in, and bring other jurisdictions to the table. Implemented in concert, these efforts will help the MPRB become the park and recreation system of the future.
Links & Downloads
The Park Board’s effort to “trim our waste” is being conducted in partnership with the City of Minneapolis, which will introduce “single sort” recycling for all of its residential customers in 2013. Hennepin County and the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency are supporting the City and Park Board’s projects.
2012 Sustainability Team Update - January 11, 2012
Some say, “Eww!” We say, “Aha!” - Park Board “Audits” Hundreds of Pounds of Garbage at Lake Harriet Bandshell - June 22, 2012
MPCA Composting Information
Be the Park
To illustrate MPRB’s commitment to sustainability, Be the Park has been implemented as a campaign to raise public awareness that both supports and celebrates the Minneapolis Park System. The poster features key messages that describe sustainability as well as goals.
Sustainability in Action