Allegheny County Comprehensive Parks Master Plan


Allegheny County has embarked on a process to shape the future of its 12,000 acres of County-owned parkland. This regional park system consists of nine parks, ranging from approximately 500 acres to 3,000 acres in size, that encircle the City of Pittsburgh at approximately a 15-mile radius.

The Allegheny County parks system is known for its rich natural, cultural, and recreational resources. The Comprehensive Master Plan will:

  1. Develop an overall vision statement and policy framework for the long-term management of the park system;
  2. Identify recreational and other park-related needs of the park system's users;
  3. Develop a comprehensive inventory of natural and cultural resources, as well as facilities and programs in the parks;
  4. Develop a comprehensive inventory of natural and cultural resources, as well as facilities and programs in the parks;
  5. Assess the park system's current operations and management procedures, including financing and revenue streams; and
  6. Develop a long-range action plan to guide the County in the enhancement and maintenance of the system.

The Comprehensive Parks Master Plan will offer a clear direction for the development of a financially sustainable park system, and will develop a long-term strategy that strikes a balance between development and rehabilitation of the parks and preservation of sensitive natural and cultural resources.

In developing the plan, the County is working with Wallace Roberts & Todd, LLC (WRT), a planning, landscape architecture, urban design, and architecture firm from Philadelphia. WRT is leading a team of eight subconsultants specializing in the areas of economic and operations analysis, recreation planning, ecology and natural resource management, archaeology and historic resource assessment, hydrology, traffic engineering, structural engineering, and survey research.

The Comprehensive Master Plan effort began in February 2000 and has been relying heavily on input from the residents of Allegheny County. The first round of public meetings were held in April 2000 and focused on identifying issues and opportunities in the park system. The next round of public meetings will be held in the fall of 2000 and will focus on drafting recommendations that will form the foundation of the Comprehensive Master Plan. The final plan will be completed in the summer of 2001.


Master Plan - 2000

April 2000 Meeting Results

Draft Policy Framework

Public Comments Received

Master Plan - 2001

Chapter 1 - Introduction

Chapter 2 - The Context

Chapter 3 - Policy Framework

Chapter 4 - Systemwide Recommendations

Chapter 5 - Park-Specific Recommendations

Chapter 6 - Implementation

Appendix A - Typical Park Management Standards

Appendix B - Natural Resource Management

Appendix C - Trail Development Standards