Parks for Teens
During the spring semester of 2016, Growing Up Boulder began work with the City of Boulder’s Parks and Recreation Department to engage youth, ages 11-18, in the design of teen-friendly parks. This project, which focused on the upgrade of the Howard Heuston neighborhood park as a prototype, was initiated in response to repeated requests from Growing Up Boulder youth for more youth-friendly park opportunities. Through research, visual preference analysis, field trips, and the construction of 3-D models, Growing Up Boulder worked with 11-14 year olds from the Casey Middle School leadership class and 14-18 year olds in the Colorado Opportunity Scholarship Initiative (a career readiness component of the I Have a Dream program) to design an ideal, teen-friendly park. Undergraduate Environmental Design students from the University of Colorado Boulder mentored the COSI students. More than 50% of all students, 11-23, were from underrepresented backgrounds. Young people shared their ideas with city planners, professors, and other community leaders to incorporate into the plans for four Boulder neighborhood parks.