Parks and Green Spaces

June 2, 2023

Whether we live in rural or urban settings, we need our green spaces. Unfortunately, those green spaces aren’t equally accessible to all New Yorkers. For example, New York City’s low-income neighborhoods have 21% less access to green space and that inequity is prevalent across the state.

In the summer, lack of green spaces creates something called the Urban Heat Island (UHI) effect, where dense urban areas get significantly hotter than rural ones. In these urban areas, low income neighborhoods are most acutely affected.

HEP’s new series on green spaces in New York State will be a resource to find public parks, community gardens, and other spaces; organizations working to protect them; and much more.

Check out our video on New York City, an example of a ‘heat island’ – urban spaces that are hotter than other areas, and the organization New Yorkers for Parks

Find a Park and Green Space Near You

Time spent outdoors can improve mental and physical health. Benefits include decreased stress and anxiety and reduced risks for illnesses like cardiovascular disease, cancer and diabetes. Find a park near you:

Green spaces by county:

We will continue to add counties. Watch this space.

Outdoor Events:

Heat Islands

Urban areas usually experience higher temperatures than others because of all the built-up structures that absorb and re-emit the sun’s heat more than nature does. Do you live in a heat island?

Heat islands are urban areas that experience higher temperatures than other areas because of the concentration of buildings, roads, and other infrastructure, which absorb and re-emit the sun’s heat more than natural landscapes.