Parks and Recreation System Master Plan

Imagine Tomorrow's Parks logo

The City of Fayetteville is invested in providing a thriving park system for all ages, abilities, and activities. The City is asking for the public’s help in building a strategic plan that will guide the future of Parks and Recreation for the next decade. This strategic planning process will evaluate the existing conditions of the park network in Fayetteville and will identify areas for growth, improvement, and preservation. As our city has grown, the park system has diversified and become an economic driver.  The natural beauty and many recreational opportunities available in Fayetteville’s parks, lakes, trails, and gardens enrich our quality of life. This planning process will build on our progress and will ensure a vibrant park system for future generations.

Parks and Recreation Advisory Board Meeting - Wednesday, Nov. 16, 2022

A Plan for the Next Ten Years

The City of Fayetteville, in partnership with Design Workshop, ETM, and the National Research Center (NRC), is working to create a Park System Master Plan that will provide guidance for the next ten years on achievable strategies regarding the Parks development, programing, funding and priorities for the future.  

This is part of a planning process initiated by the City in 2018 that began with Imagine Tomorrow’s Parks, a preliminary community engagement and site analysis effort conducted by Parks staff.

Why do this now?

The last park system master plan conducted by the City was in 2002, and not only have many of the recommendations from that plan been completed, but much has also changed in the city and region. The current parks system has a lot to celebrate—great trails, cultural events, lakes, places to play and a beautiful setting with significant natural open space resources.  Yet there is also opportunity to improve outdated facilities and increase maintenance efficiencies at existing parks, while at the same time increasing access and connectivity to parks, strengthening programs and special events within the city and better utilizing park assets.

What are we hoping to achieve?

The Parks System Master Plan will provide a strong framework to guide parks development, program funding, and priorities over the next ten years.  By understanding community values and identifying what could be included to align with the community wants and needs, the plan will provide clear direction to provide a parks system that is accessible, inclusive, and helps foster a high quality of life for the Fayetteville community.  The final plan will meet the requirements of a park system master/strategic plan as outlined in Council for Accreditation of Park and Recreation Agencies standards.

What are the next steps?

We have gathered a great deal of public feedback on what the community would like to see in their park and recreation system. In February and March 2022, we presented findings and initial ideas that will be used to form a draft master plan. Public feedback is needed to help prioritize directions, ensure that we are not missing important ideas so that we can formulate a strong draft plan.

This summer a second set of meeting should occur to review the draft plan formulated with the input gained this February and Mach. The City will continue to reach out to Fayetteville residents to invite them to participate and provide input and insight along every step in the process. Public Meeting dates are listed below and we hope to see you participate in one of these upcoming meetings:

We held two meetings Feb. 19 and one March 2. Meeting materials, presentations, videos and interactive idea mapping are available on the Imagine Tomorrow's Parks Speak Up project page.

  • Project Understanding: Public Engagement
    • January 2021 - February 2022
  • Shared Vision: Workshop #1
    • February 2022 - March 2022
  • Recommendation: Workshop #2
    • Summer 2022
  • Final Plan: Fall 2022
Parks Strategic Master Plan Schedule

This summer another  set of meeting should occur to review the draft plan formulated with the input gained this February and March. The City will continue to reach out to Fayetteville residents to invite them to participate and provide input and insight along every step in the process.

2018 Surveys and Planning

In 2018 the Fayetteville Parks and Recreation Department began to meet with residents, leadership, partners, and other interested parties to gather information about what the Fayetteville community wanted in their park system. Before asking questions, staff developed baseline information for city residents so they could better understand what is currently available in our community, issues affecting recreation in our city, and what trends are impacting cities around the country. Twelve public meetings were held in locations all around Fayetteville to help gather feedback. Surveys with wide ranging questions were used at these meetings and on the web. Over 1,500 surveys were completed.

Citizens expressed a need for a diversity of recreational opportunities in the city, but two strong themes emerged. The first is to have a parks and recreation system that helps our citizens live an active lifestyle, and the second was to have spaces that allow for contact with nature. The information from the surveys and the many meetings was used to help develop the list of park projects for the 2019 bond renewal: 2019 Parks bond projects. This set of projects will help strengthen the built environment in a way that meets our citizens' goals.

You may also view results from the paper survey and the online survey that were distributed in 2018.

Additional Information

We've mapped drive times to some of your favorite parks and we've also compiled information about existing activities and amenities. Click on the icons to check it out! (PDF documents)

Drive Time: 5 to 10 minutes (Drive time to regional parks document)

Existing Activities And Amenities document

Demographics And Density document

Click image to view PDF

Park Map with Park Classifications