City Parks Worldwide

Publicly accessible greenspace – namely, parks and gardens – performs a variety of functions in urban areas. It provides places for people to interact socially, relax, participate in recreational activities and to re-connect with the natural environment. Parks also contribute to the cultural context and value of the places where people live. The infographic illustrates the number of hectares of public parks available in relation to the number of people in various cities across the world. The larger the font size used for the city name, the more greenspace per head of population.

Click on the infographic to enlarge it.

city parks worldwide infographic

Area of parks in cities

The infographic reveals a wide range of greenspace provision in relation to the amount of people living in 37 cities across the world. Sydney in Australia tops the list, with 118 hectares of parks per 1000 people, closely followed by Stockholm in Sweden, with 113 hectares. These two cities are some way in front of third-placed Oslo in Norway.

If one looks simply at the percentage of land that is greenspace in a city, then Oslo tops the list, at 68%. However, because Oslo is relatively densely populated, that amount equates to only 49 hectares of parks per 1000 people. Conversely, only 10% of land cover in Melbourne, Australia, is greenspace – but it provides a higher than average 21 hectares of greenspace per 1000 people because it has a relatively low population density, making it 8th in the ranking.

In the dataset, Rome in Italy, has the average amount of greenspace per 1000 people, with 17 hectares. At the bottom of the list, with less than 1 hectare of public parks per 1000 people, are Istanbul, Buenos Aires and Taipei.


A number of cities provide data to the World Cities Culture Forum to create a dataset of cultural indicators, including the provision of public parks. It should be noted that the year the data is created by each city differs.

The area of public greenspace in each city was divided by the population to provide the hectarage per 1000 people. The highest score (Sydney) was taken as the baseline for the size of the font used for the city name. The percentage difference was calculated for each of the remaining cities and this was used to scale the font size down to illustrate the lower values.

Cities that were calculated at 4% or less of the baseline are shown the same size on the infographic, as the name would otherwise be too small to be legible. This applies to the following cities, where the provision of greenspace per 1000 people falls from 5 hectares to 0.3 hectares: Warsaw, Lisbon, Shanghai, Montreal, Moscow, Brussels, New York, San Francisco, Seoul, Milan, Toronto, Tokyo, Bogota, Istanbul, Buenos Aires and Taipei.


This infographic appeared in JONO Design e-news. The e-news is published once every couple of months and each issue contains a specially designed infographic.

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