Recreation Plan Website for California

SCORP home page
A mobile responsive site allowing users to explore the SCORP
Client:   California Department of Parks and Recreation

The usual approach for federally required state outdoor recreation plans is to publish a report and then reference it on a web site. California took a different approach, asking GreenInfo to build a web site that allows viewers to use interactive mapping tools to see park needs for any part of the state, as well as access other tools and information.

GreenInfo was asked by the California Department of Parks and Recreation's Office of Grants and Local Services (OGALS), which administers grant funds for parks and recreation, to expand its development of a State Comprehensive Outdoor Recreation Plan (SCORP).  By creating a website with informative tools and useful resources to complement the SCORP report (learn more about that project»), GreenInfo was able to develop a site that puts the plan into action - providing support and advancing partnerships.

GreenInfo hosts the website, which is served through a custom domain, ParksForCalifornia.org, increasing flexibility in deploying the map and other interactive project tools.  The front-end of the website was built using html, css, and Javascript in the Bootstrap framework, to be responsive on tablet and mobile devices while presenting a clean and modern interface. 

The map tools were built using the tried and true open-source mapping stack consisting of Mapserver, PostgreSQL/PostGIS, and the CodeIgniter PHP MVC framework, with Leaflet/Javascript and jQuery powering the maps on the front-end. This combination enables interactive layer display on maps, prompt production of demographic summaries for user defined areas, as well as responsive charts and tables, and custom pdf report printouts based on search results.

The web site content reflects and greatly enlarges on the SCORP report, Meeting the Park Needs of All Californians, and opens a new path for states who want to engage their constituents more actively in supporting parks.  

The main elements of the site are all accessible online and for download:
  • Access to the SCORP document 
  • Interactive tools including information on park access, community attributes, and grant tracking
  • A full inventory of the 1,000 agencies and nonprofits that manage California's 14,000 parks
  • Stories describing best practices for developing and improving parks
  • An action plan to be taken to implement the SCORP
GreenInfo developed the site alongside the SCORP report design process and coordinated overall content and graphic design.  Three interactive mapping tools demonstrate:

1. Measures of PARK ACCESS:
  • The areas and estimated population living over a half mile from any park (standard established in the 1960 California Public Outdoor Recreation Plan)
  • Underserved communities - census tracts with less than 3 acres of parkland per 1,000 residents (per legislation passed in 2008 enacted the Statewide Park Program, Public Resources Code §5642)
2.  COMMUNITY FACT FINDER enables users to learn more about a specific location of their choice.  After selecting a location (by entering an address, latitude/longitude, search, or clicking a place on the map) a set of demographics are returned on screen and are available in a downloadable PDF report.  The tool generates an optimized on-the-fly analysis to nearly instantly return the demographics of the custom half mile area.  The processing includes an evaluation of the urban/rural status, alongside a set of formulas to calculate the equal area distribution and weighted average of the demographics.

3.  Over 8,300 grants totaling more than $2 billion dollars are detailed in the GRANT ALLOCATIONS tool.  Each grant details the: grant program, total funds dispersed, project description, and location.  A dynamic chart reports the total number of grants given by program and total funds administered.

Each of the tools includes:
  • A downloadable PDF report for offline use
  • Downloadable GIS data sets used in the SCORP report and online, allowing GIS users to conduct their own analysis 
  • Detailed documentation of data definitions, sources, and methods

Results:

Focus:   Environment, Government Agencies, Public Health, Recreation, Social Justice/Equity  

Services:  Interactive Solutions, GIS Services, Analysis, Data, Maps, Web Mapping, Website Design 

Tags:   California, FactFinder, SCORP, park access, parks  

Project Years: 2014-15

GreenInfo Network creates, analyzes, visualizes and communicates information in the public interest. We specialize in mapping and related technology for nonprofits and public agencies, focusing on using it for conservation, social equity, public health, environment and foundation grant making.
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