Joint Use Toolkit

Many communities lack safe, adequate places for children to play. Although they have a variety of recreational facilities, many school districts close their property to the public after hours because of concerns about vandalism, maintenance, and liability. Through a joint use agreement, your city or county can partner with the school district to address these concerns and open these playgrounds.

Our toolkit, Playing Smart: Maximizing the Potential of School and Community Property through Joint Use Agreements, shares what we have learned from successful agreements, offering guidelines and templates for other communities looking to expend their access to school recreational facilities.

Playing Smart: Maximizing the Potential of School and Community Property through Joint Use Agreements

Joint use case studies

Niagara Falls, New York

Through the use of four joint use agreements, the City of Niagara Falls, New York, improved the quality of outdated courts and partnered with community groups to provide programming for youth and adults that fosters community engagement.

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Santa Clarita, California

Partnering together, the William S. Hart Union High School District and The Boys & Girls Club worked to construct and share a 27,000-square-foot facility that serves to support a growing student population.

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Boston, Massachusetts

In an effort to create more green spaces for the children of Boston, Massachusetts, the Boston Schoolyard Initiative partnered with city schools to create playgrounds that serve as play and educational spaces.

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Hernando, Mississippi

The City of Hernando, Mississippi, utilizes joint use agreements to open school facilities, build and grow sports leagues, and give residents access to recreational facilities throughout the year.

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Greenbelt, Maryland

A partnership formed between the City of Greenbelt and Greenbelt Homes Inc. provided an opportunity to create joint use agreements between the city and homeowners associations allowing broader public access to non-city-owned playgrounds.

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Tucson, Arizona

Leveraging existing resources to address a park deficit, the City of Tucson, Arizona, set a goal to ensure that there is a park or playspace within walking distance of every resident.

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