Autumn on Lake Audobon

Autumn on Lake Audobon
Autumn on Lake Audubon, Photo by Alison Kamat

Friday, February 27, 2015

Fairfax County spends less per capita on its parks than almost any locality in the United States.

Recent data prepared by City Park Facts shows that Fairfax County spent just $21 per capita on its parks in FY2015 ranking it 85th among the 88 localities that provided per capita spending information on their parks.  Nationally, the average locality spent $100 per capita on its parks--that's $6.2 billion for the 62 million covered in this listing of 88 localities.  The $21 total per capita for Fairfax County is only $11 more than the bottom of the list bankrupt Detroit spends on its residents.  Below is the complete list in spending per capita order with Fairfax County highlighted in red.

While the spreadsheet speaks quite eloquently for itself about current conditions, it does not address future conditions.  As we are all aware, the amendment to Reston's Master Plan will allow about 50,000 more people to live here at some point in the next 30-40 years.  At the same time, the County Board, on the recommendation of the Fairfax County Park Authority (FCPA), decided to not add even one acre of new County park space to Reston.  The impact on Reston quality of life and the use of our proprietary RA facilities (most of them by non-RA residents) will be profound. 

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