Parks improve our quality of life. They also provide millions of jobs and contribute billions of dollars to the economy annually. Park maintenance helps ensure that communities all over the world continue to enjoy these perks.
There are many different categories of parks out there. They can be publicly managed or privately owned. They can have playgrounds and various side attractions, wide stretches of natural scenery, benches, aquatic attractions, ponds, and even protected wildlife areas.
Regardless of the type of park you own or manage, ongoing park maintenance is something you can never put on the sidelines.
What is park maintenance?
Parks and recreation areas are an ideal easy-breezy part of any community and a great place for fun, relaxation, and casual social meetings. Just like water supply, sewer management, and public safety are considered essential public services, the presence of a well-maintained park can boost the perceived desirability and value of a neighborhood, especially for young families.
Park maintenance refers to all the maintenance activities performed to keep a park clean, pleasant, safe, and operational. Typical park maintenance tasks include mowing grass, replacing flowers and shrubs, pruning trees, picking litter, and clearing garbage. More on this in the next section.
Common park maintenance tasks
These are the major sections that you would expect to see in a typical public park.
We discuss common maintenance tasks associated with each area below, in no particular order.
Car park area
The visitor’s parking lot is usually the first area that you’ll see when approaching a park. It’s also one of the major locations to consider accessibility options for your park. Common maintenance tasks include:
What is a park without a playground? A missed opportunity.
Common maintenance tasks include:
Sweeping, trash removal, litter collection
Wiping and disinfection of play equipment
Repainting, polishing, and repair of play equipment
Improving maintenance in your park
As a park manager, it’s important to remain mindful of things that can impact the look and feel of your park, as well as its safety and security. Here are some preventive measures you can take.
Improve park security
Although you and your team provide an important public service, things can turn unpleasant very quickly if a visitor’s car is stolen or broken into. Just like with any other facility maintenance, you can deter potential thieves by installing security cameras in strategic locations around the park.
It doesn’t have to be anything fancy or expensive. Some basic security cameras with short notices like the one below, pasted all over the park, will help immensely.
Landscape maintenance provides well-maintained lawns and plants, and these are a major attraction at parks. Park maintenance workers plant shrubs and flowers, mow grass, prune trees, and provide pesticide and fertilization services. They also maintain and manage the sprinkler and irrigation systems.
Loose or missing items (like fasteners, bolts, nuts or screws)
Excessively sharp edges on play equipment
Metal equipment that has become excessively rusty or torn (it’s generally advisable to avoid metal play equipment altogether)
In general, whichever property or infrastructure you have to maintain, preventive maintenance should constitute the bulk of your efforts. You can design your own operating procedures, much like in more challenging asset management environments.
Types of park maintenance jobs
Park maintenance workers are often a part of a larger team in the park system, which is responsible for keeping the property in good condition by providing a safe and clean location, in addition to protecting the natural resources of the park. So, what kind of staff can you find working in parks and what exactly do park maintenance workers do?
At public parks, the hiring of maintenance workers usually falls under the jurisdiction of the council or county authorities. Federal park workers are hired through the National Park Service.
Depending on the position you are looking for, park maintenance jobs generally require entry-level experience and basic formal education. With the exception of the park manager and technicians, other park workers mostly require little more than a high school education.
Below is the basic outline of different categories of park maintenance workers.
They handle the cleaning of all amenities in the park buildings, picnic shelters, restrooms, and other park facilities. In smaller parks with a smaller workforce, janitorial staff will also handle routine maintenance tasks like the replacement of burnt light bulbs.
Gardeners and landscape professionals
Landscape professionals attend to the park’s vegetation. They remove diseased flowers and shrubs, recommend and plant new ones, mow lawns, remove weeds, and they clear leaves and debris.
As part of their duties, they’ll manage irrigation systems and apply fertilizers to plants besides maintaining fencing and signages. Since they are responsible for handling fertilizers and pesticides, they are required by federal law to have a pesticide applicator license.
Maintenance technicians are skilled workers that perform hands-on maintenance on park infrastructure like pump and plumbing systems, electrical fittings, and HVAC systems.
They are often involved with repairing and servicing equipment and tools used by landscape professionals. This includes, but is not limited to, lawnmowers, irrigation sprinklers, and pesticide spraying equipment.
Maintenance supervisors coordinate and oversee the staff, plan and schedule park maintenance, organize resources – like tools and parts needed for park maintenance – and enforce compliance with park rules and regulations.
They are usually actively involved in the hiring and onboarding process for other maintenance workers.
Using maintenance software to streamline park maintenance
Park maintenance may look simple on the surface, but there’s actually quite a lot of work involved behind the scenes to maintain safe and smooth park operations.
Limble CMMS, for example, enables park maintenance staff to create and assign work orders on the go, as well as schedule preventive maintenance and inspections. On top of that, it helps you track your spare parts inventory levels and the performance of your staff and equipment.
Of course, none of that would matter if the budget is getting out of hand. You need an in-depth breakdown of maintenance costs. Want to know how much you spent last month on specific parts, vendors, assets, or paid overtime? With Limble, you can generate respective reports with just a few simple clicks.
"Honestly - the customer support has been fabulous. We had a minor feature request that was deployed within 24 hours - which is unheard of. Even better when you consider our business is located in a completely different time zone (somewhere in Australia). Limble is quite intuitive and I love the ability to have assets nested within each other."
— Ed Cronin
Perfect for my business
"I run a coffee equipment service company and Limble is great for everything we do. We can store all of our assets and equipment and access it easily with a comprehensive list of all the work done on the equipment. Limble is by far the best CMMS on the market and I wouldn't dream of using anything else."
— Tie Groth
I spent a long time evaluating systems I'm so glad I chose Limble
"Limble is super easy to use. For technicians receiving work orders, it requires almost no training. The app makes it quick and easy to create work orders (with pictures) from your phone. PM's are also very easy to set up. Limble is also the least expensive."
— Matt Olson FMP
Very well written software. Easy to use.
"The support is fantastic. The guys who support this software even email you to check in from time to time. If you have any issues you can call directly, and get instant help!"
— Dan Velente
Limble CMMS is a great product and is very intuitive
"This CMMS checks many boxes for what we were looking for. Flexible. Mobile App for in the field use. Cost-Effective. Reporting. Great Dashboard. Great Support. Cloud Based. Cost-Effective."
— Roger Beck
The best value available in CMMS Software
"This software is very easy to use. All CMMS suppliers say that, but I found this one to be exactly that. This software, in my opinion, is the best value out there in the CMMS world. My team of maintenance techs got on board quickly and loves the app. Anytime you can get 8 of 8 maintenance techs to get on board, you have a winner."
— Mark Quillin
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