North Cary Park, Cary, North Carolina

Cary, North Carolina, has been one of the fastest growing cities in the country for the past thirty years. It has a rich, diverse mix of parks, cultural resources, trails, and open spaces. Residents have never been shy about expressing their viewpoints, and public participation meetings for this project averaged over 200 people per meeting. Mark Robinson, now a principal of the Johnson Hill Land Ethics Studio, prepared the Town’s first master parks and recreation plan when the Town’s population was 20,000.

Read More

Twenty years later, the Town had grown to 120,000 people and its park and recreation needs had grown exponentially.

This plan was the town’s first major effort to integrate cultural resources into its service profile and long-range planning. The plan addressed all park facilities, an extensive trail and greenway system, the integration of shared school and park facilities, and cultural resources and facilities. Comprehensive action plans, capital improvement cost estimates, and operation budgets were projected for a twenty-year window.

Residents demanded, and supported, an ambitious parks and recreation program. The public participation process was critical to the success of the project, as was close collaboration with staff, key stakeholders, and co-consultants.