NEW ORLEANS — The National Recreation and Park Association and 11 companies are creating a new play area next to a linear park in New Orleans.

The area next to the Lafitte Greenway will be unveiled Sunday afternoon, the day before the association opens its annual conference in New Orleans.

The New Orleans Recreation Development Commission’s Lemann Playground has basketball courts and other equipment. But it’s getting nearly $1 million in new equipment including lights, exercise stations, bleachers, soccer goals and bike racks.

Association spokeswoman Heather Williams says the group expects nearly 8,000 people in New Orleans for its conference Monday through Thursday.

The work at Lemann Playground is part of its Parks Build Community national program to show parks can improve health and vitality of American communities.

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