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PRESS RELEASE

Presidio of San Francisco Becomes the First Park in the United States to Receive the Green Flag Award

Tuesday, Jan 14, 2020

​​Prestigious International Honor Celebrates the Best Parks​ and Green Spaces Around the World

San Francisco, CA (January 14, 2020) – The Presidio of San Francisco has become the first park in the United States—and America’s first national park site—to earn the prestigious Green Flag Award®, which recognizes the highest standards for visitor experience and management of parks and green spaces around the world. The Presidio joins over 2,000 parks and green spaces in 15 countries that fly the Green Flag Award, including sites in Australia, Mexico, and the United Arab Emirates. Founded in 1996 in the United Kingdom, the aim of the Green Flag Award is to ensure that everyone has access to a quality green space to enable healthy lifestyles.

The Green Flag Award was bestowed following an extensive evaluation conducted by professional peer judges from the park sector who inspected the Presidio’s facilities, reviewed management documents and marketing material, and met with park managers. The Presidio ranked within the highest overall scoring bracket for the Award following the assessment under eight key criteria: A Welcoming Place; Healthy, Safe and Secure; Well Maintained and Clean; Environmental Management; Biodiversity, Landscape and Heritage; Community Involvement; Marketing and Communication; and Management.

The evaluation report concluded, “In a relatively short space of time the San Francisco Presidio has been transformed from a former military outpost designed to ‘keep people out,’ into one of the most welcoming and well-facilitated public resources the judges have ever visited. The management team is focused and committed to preserving and further enhancing the park.”

“We are so proud to be the first park to fly the Green Flag Award in the United States,” said Jean Fraser, CEO of Presidio Trust. “The Presidio is a national park site where people, plants and animals all thrive due to the commitment to excellence by our board, staff, partners and volunteers.”

International Development Manager for the Green Flag Award, Carl McClean, said: “Huge congratulations are in order for the Presidio Trust upon achieving what is now the internationally recognized standard for parks and green spaces. We are delighted that such an iconic and innovative park has set the benchmark for others in the United States to follow.”

The Presidio of San Francisco is at the center of the Golden Gate National Recreation Area, the most visited national park in America. The park welcomes more than 7.5 million visitors each year. It is managed by the Presidio Trust, a small federal agency that transformed the 1,480-aces at the Golden Gate Bridge from a U.S. Army post to a national park site, in partnership with the National Park Service. The Presidio also receives essential support from America’s most successful national parks friends group, the Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy. The Presidio celebrated 25 years as a national park site in October 2019.

The Green Flag Award judges acknowledged in their review: “The Presidio’s journey would most certainly not have been possible without the complex collaboration between the Presidio Trust, National Park Service, and Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy. Also, the expertise and commitment of the management, operational teams and volunteers all work in forward motion to curate this fantastic resource for the local and international community.”

Examples of Green Flag Award parks are: Al Ain Oasis in the United Arab Emirates, a UNESCO World Heritage Site; St. Stephen’s Green in Dublin, Ireland; Centennial Parklands in Sydney, Australia and Parque Fundidora, in Monterrey, Mexico. Publicly accessible spaces like city and state parks, neighborhood parks, botanic gardens and historic gardens, nature reserves, and university campuses among others, are eligible. To see a full list of Green Flag Award winners, visit: http://www.greenflagaward.org/award-winners/

About the Presidio and the Presidio Trust

The Presidio Trust is a federal agency that manages the Presidio of San Francisco, a national park at the heart of the 82,000-acre Golden Gate National Recreation Area. In partnership with the National Park Service and the non-profit Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy, the Presidio Trust brings alive the park’s historic, natural, and recreational assets for the inspiration, education, health, and enjoyment of all people at no cost to taxpayers. Spanning nearly 1,500 acres in a spectacular setting at the Golden Gate, the Presidio is defined by its history, spectacular views, natural habitats, and beautiful open spaces. It is home to 3,000 residents and 200 tenant organizations, many of which welcome and serve the public. Learn more at www.presidio.gov.

About the Green Flag Award

The Green Flag Award® is a non-profit international accreditation program that recognizes and rewards well-managed parks and green spaces. The Green Flag Award is managed by the UK environmental charity Keep Britain Tidy, under license from the UK Government Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government and delivered in partnership with our network of national operators around the world.​ Learn more at www.greenflagaward.org.

About Keep Britain Tidy

Keep Britain Tidy is a leading UK environmental charity that cares for the environment on your doorstep. We work to improve public space, eliminate littering and reduce waste. We run programs including Eco-Schools, Green Flag Award for parks and green spaces and the Blue Flag/Seaside Awards for beaches. To find out more about Keep Britain Tidy, our programs and campaigns visit www.keepbritaintidy.org.