Master of Science (MS)


Geography and Anthropology

Document Type



City parks provide intrinsic environmental, aesthetic, and recreation benefits to our cities and their inhabitants. Some researchers indicate that City parks serve as places of reduced crime and actually increase the safety of the surrounding area. Other researchers claim that city parks have been seen as contested space. The purpose of this thesis research is to study the relationship between parks and crime or comparing crime types between parks and their cities. First, this thesis research address the difference between crimes in city parks compared to crimes in the entire city. The second research question addresses the impact that parks have on crime in areas adjacent to them. The third research question is whether BREC parks could be identified as crime hotspot. The reported crime data analyzed in this study are from the city of Baton Rouge, LA, from January 1 2011 to December 31 2016. The parks data set is provided by the East Baton Rouge Parish Recreation and Park Commission (BREC). Statistical methods (Chi-Squared Test), “crime location quotient” (CLQ) and hotspot method (Gi*-statistic) were applied to test the relationship between the density of crimes in parks, their surrounding areas, and the city. The main conclusion from this thesis research is that the composition of crime types for all BREC parks is significantly different from the composition if crime types for the city of Baton Rouge from 2011 to 2016 and for all six years, combined. The results from CLQ analysis confirms that crime does not seem to be clustered in BREC parks compared to the city of Baton Rouge, but the surrounding areas of parks (0-200 feet buffer, 201-400 feet buffer, 401-600 feet buffer) attract events of crime. Some parks could be identified as crime hotspots Based on analysis of Gi* -statistic.



Document Availability at the Time of Submission

Release the entire work immediately for access worldwide.

Committee Chair

Xuelian Meng