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Spatial Equity of Parks in the Oklahoma City Metropolitan Area

Skraastad Jurney, Pamela Dianne

The purpose of this study was to assess the equity of park distribution in the Oklahoma City metropolitan area. Equity is providing a service in proportion to need. Equity in this study is defined as the "need" groups, minorities and lower-incomes, having more access to parks. Two types of parks were considered in this study: community and neighborhood. Applying various accessibility measures, the results were compared to the distributions of the socioeconomic traits throughout the city. Local spatial autocorrelation statistics were also employed to compare the results of the measures to the socioeconomic characteristics. Parks were found to be distributed equitably among the lower income groups and the Hispanic population. Recommendations were made to improve the accessibility to community parks for the black population. The spatial autocorrelation results exposed deficiencies in the locations of neighborhood parks. The methods are repeatable and can be applied to evaluate the effect of proposed parks.