1. Advocate for Funding

Write a letter, send an email, or call your local elected officials. Tell them how much the health of your park impacts the safety and vitality of your neighborhood, describe the changes you would like to see, and ask for funding for park improvements.


Capital projects are largely paid for by budget allocations from elected officials who are responsive to requests from their constituents.


Late fall/early winter, to coordinate your request with the wish list NYC Parks will present to elected officials between January and March for the next fiscal year, which begins July 1.


Before asking for funding from your elected officials, discuss your goals with your PFP Outreach Coordinator, your NYC Parks borough office, and your Community Board. PFP can help you develop relationships to effectively raise funds for your park. You should agree with your borough office on the budget request before approaching officials. In some cases, you can gather input before advocating for funding to demonstrate community support for the project.

Elected officials to contact for funding include:

Participatory Budgeting

The New York City Council now hosts a Participatory Budgeting (PB) process every year.  This is where community members directly decide how to spend part of the public budget.  Council Members give at least $1 million of their discretionary budget for capital projects decided by the community.  Community members can propose projects like improvements to schools, parks, libraries, public housing, and other public or community spaces.

In NYC parks, projects that can be funded through PB include site improvements, like basketball court repaving, a new park entrance, bench and path paving, an asphalt parkway, or adult fitness equipment.  NYC Parks recommends focusing on either: 1) Improvements to an existing park; 2) Proposals for new features within an existing park.

31 of 51 Council Districts participate in PB.



View a sample letter to an elected official.

Useful Tools


Learn what people want for the park through brief, one-on-one interviews.

Success Stories