Duhaime's Law Dictionary


Park Definition:

An area of land set aside for passive common use, where certain types of activities are restricted, to permit individuals to escape the intensity of urban life.

Related Terms: Common Land

In City of Plano v Homoky, Justice Murphy of the Court of Appeals of Texas wrote:

"A public park is said to be a tract of land, great or small, dedicated and maintained for the purposes of pleasure, exercise, amusement, or ornament; a place to which the public at large may resort to for recreation, air, and light. A park may include various facilities used by the public generally for recreation, including tennis, pitching horse shoes, croquet, baseball, basketball, golf, walking, horseback riding, picknicking [sic], and general outdoor exercise. Recreational parks are governmental in design because their purpose is to promote and benefit the health and pleasure of the people at large."

In Newfoundland & Labrador Wildlife Federation v. Newfoundland, the Newfoundland Supreme Court used these words:

"[O]ne must consider the ordinary and grammatical sense of the term park. While there are many different types of parks, ranging from ornamental city parks to recreational wilderness parks, the underlying concept appears to be one of restricting certain types of activities within specific areas in order to permit individuals to escape what might be described as the hustle and bustle or hurly-burly of everyday life."

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