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Salt Lake County Wants Input on New Parks and Rec Plan

Apollomelos via Wikimedia Commons

Salt Lake County is preparing to draw up a new 10-year-plan for the region’s parks and recreation facilities. But first they need input from those who use them.

The Salt Lake County Parks and Recreation master plan is what the county uses to guides spending, as well as management and construction of things like parks, open space and rec centers. And with the population expected to grow by half a million of the next few decades, the demand for those services will only increase. 

Callie Birdsall is a spokesperson for Salt Lake County Parks and Rec. She says her department will need to keep up with that demand.

“With population growth there might be areas that are underserved by recreation centers as well as parks that may need to be expanded or they might need further maintenance,” Birdsall says. “So it’s not just a plan to come up with new construction, it’s also how we maintain and operate our current facilities.”

The Salt Lake County Parks and Recreation Department manages nearly 5,000 acres of open space, 23 miles of trails, 21 recreation centers, 6 golf courses and 105 parks. Birdsall says the department has an idea of what residents want most.

“We did a needs assessment in 2012 that was county-wide and overwhelming support was for the trails,” Birdsall says. “People wanted to build new trails, they wanted to preserve space for trails. They just wanted their open space preserved and be able to use that in the future and for their children as well.”

Residents will have an opportunity to inform the master plan process at several meetings scheduled throughout the month of November. The first is next Wednesday November 5th at the Draper Library.

The master plan is being created as the county’s Zoo Arts and Parks tax is up for renewal. It’s on the Election Ballot as Proposition 1. 

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