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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Opportunities for Incorporating Food Landscapes in Public Parks

The data associated with this publication are within the manuscript.

Public parks are an integral part of many urban areas within the United States, and provide a number of ecosystem and community benefits. However, localized food production, including food landscaping, is not often incorporated into these spaces. Including food landscaping in public parks has the potential to increase benefits and create local food supplychains. The purpose of this study was to explore cities’ views on food landscaping projects, including the barriers that exist for implementing these projects, and to create an implementation guide that can be used by city governments to convert existing public greenspaces into multipurpose food landscapes. This study used the City of Poway in Southern California as a case study to look at why cities do not pursue these projects, and to explore the information that cities could find helpful when developing these projects. The researcher conducted eight interviews with various city employees using semi-structured interviews. Findings suggest that food landscaping in public parks is possible but will require cities to rethink what public parks are designed for and innovative ways to overcome various barriers that may exist for these projects. Participants discussed a variety of benefits that these projects can bring to both a community and a city, which may provide greater impetus for incorporating these projects in the future. This study and accompanying implementation guide pave the way for future research on food landscaping in public parks.

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