Media inquiries: Please contact Gary Waugh, email@example.com, 804-786-5045.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Date: November 13, 2006
Contact: Gary Waugh, DCR Public Relations Manager, (804) 786-5045, firstname.lastname@example.org
Draft outdoor recreation, conservation and open space plan to be presented at local meetings Presentation to include local recommendations
(RICHMOND, Va.) ? A new draft of the state?s outdoor recreation, conservation and open space plan, including local recommendations, will be the focus of two public meetings held in Chesapeake, Monday, Nov. 27. Planners from the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation will present the draft Virginia Outdoors Plan at 3 p.m. and 7 p.m. meetings at the Hampton Roads Planning District Commission Office at 723 Woodlake Drive in Chesapeake. These are among more than 40 meetings to be held statewide Oct. through Dec.
The Virginia Outdoors Plan is the state?s official conservation, outdoor recreation and open space guide. All levels of government and the private sector use it in determining and meeting land conservation, outdoor recreation and open space needs. Recommendations in the plan are also used as one of the tools in ranking projects for Virginia Land Conservation Foundation funds.
?The VOP has long been an important tool in meeting Virginians? outdoor recreational needs,? said DCR Director Joseph H. Maroon. ?With Gov. Kaine?s commitment to land conservation, this plan takes on added significance.?
The plan is revised every five years. As part of its revision, DCR staff have updated the outdoor recreation resource inventory, conducted a statewide Virginia Outdoor Survey with assistance from Virginia Commonwealth University and last fall held a series of 40 public input meetings statewide. Among the topics brought up in those meetings were trails and greenway linkages, water trails and scenic waterways, urban greenspace, eco-tourism and nature deficit disorder. Local outdoor recreation and conservation recommendations also surfaced. Recommendations found in the draft plan include:
For Chesapeake, Franklin, Hampton, Newport News, Norfolk,
Poquoson, Portsmouth, Suffolk, Virginia Beach, Williamsburg
and Isle of Wight, James City, Southampton and York counties:
- Implement regional green infrastructure planning for a regional conservation corridor system to include open space, conservation land, recreation opportunities and wildlife corridors. Efforts coordinated by HRPDC.
- Continue implementation, marketing and partnerships for the Capital-to-Capital Trail along Route 5.
- Incorporate the Captain John Smith Adventures on the James Trail and the National Park Service?s proposed John Smith National Historic Trail, should it be authorized, in local comprehensive plans as a way to further heritage and ecotourism in the region.
- Continue efforts to protect pine barren communities, seasonal depression ponds and other significant wetlands.
- Secure conservation protection for large blocks of old-growth cypress-tupelo swamps, additional habitat for rare reptiles and amphibians and additional lands along the Northwest and North Landing Rivers.
- Connect Paradise Creek in Portsmouth with other regional wildlife corridors and water trails and support Paradise Creek Nature Park as the vital link in these corridors and trails.
The draft VOP is also available for review on the DCR website.
Go to www.dcr.virginia.gov; click on ?Recreation Planning? then
on ?Draft 2007 Virginia Outdoors Plan.? Comments
will be accepted through Dec. 15, 2006 and can be sent to
- 30 -