Formula 2040 Gets Council Comments

Hollywood Elementary School

In tomorrow’s Council meeting, the Council will consider sending a letter to the County Council with comments regarding Formula 2040, the County’s draft Master Plan for parks and recreation over the next 27 years.

A copy of the plan is available here. The plan includes ambitious goals to significantly increase the recreational resources available to County residents, and its goals of improving connectivity, health and wellness, and economic development in the County.

The plan also aims to re-purpose existing recreational facilities to better meet the needs and demand of the community, and to change the traditional focus on niche community centers to focus on larger, multi-generational facilities where entire families can go and each member of the family can participate in recreational activities tailored to their needs.

Most importantly for North College Park, Formula 2040 includes construction of a new, 12,000-square foot gymnasium at Hollywood Elementary School (see in picture). The purpose of this would be to open the gym up to community activities in the evenings and on weekends, with programmed activities by Park and Planning.
The Council will consider sending a letter with the following comments:

  1. Trails – A recommendation that the County develop and implement new design standards for urban trails and include a plan to light some trails with a priority for missing trail links rather than costly, larger new trail networks;
  2. Recreational facilities – Encourages a balance between larger, multi-generational centers and neighborhood recreational opportunities;
  3. Environmental performance – Encourages more attention to sustainability issues such as the environmental quality of parkland, energy efficiency and water efficiency of facilities, and the goal of obtaining LEED certification;
  4. Playing fields – emphasizes the need for quality, appropriately-sized playing fields for all ages and types of uses;
  5. Historical resources – encourages taking advantage of the County’s historical resources for culturally-based economic development and partnering with the private sector when these resources are discovered or endangered during new development;
  6. Land Development Ordinances – Encourages M-NCPPC should revisit the formula for determining open space land dedication and recreation facilities required of developers during the development review process and use these to offset the impacts of development and improve the levels of service in the immediate area of a new development;
  7. Public Art – Encourages the County to recognize the importance of public art in parks and recreation facilities and require the incorporation of public art in any new facilities;
  8. Food production – Encourages exploring ways to incorporate local food production into the County’s parkland through, for example, community gardens, urban farms, and agricultural plots;
  9. Cost recovery – Concern that the cost recovery goals may be too ambitious and may have a negative impact on services;
  10. Citizen participation – Encourages more direct engagement with municipalities to explore opportunities for partnerships to meet the needs of city and town residents; and
  11. 11.Support for the Hollywood Elementary School gymnasium, and encouragement to look into programmable activities in this facility.

If you want to send additional comments, please let me know.

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