Ten-year master plan for regional parks to be discussed July 7

UC Center for Field Studies hosts Great Parks of Hamilton County planning chief

By Keshav Vinod

The University of Cincinnati's Center for Field Studies will play host Sunday to a public meeting on the future of the Great Parks of Hamilton County.

Tim Zelek, chief of planning for the park district, will speak on the county's park master plan at UC's Center for Field Studies in Harrison. The talk, titled "Great Parks Comprehensive Master Plan: Your Role in the Next Phase," is free and open to the public.

“An inclusive and thorough community planning process helped to create this Comprehensive Master Plan which will guide parks, facilities, programming and services over the next 10 years ending in 2028,” Zelek said. “Community members are seeking more nature trails, paved walking trails and biking trails. Ninety-eight percent of survey respondents believe it is important to use protected areas to provide a connected network of trails and to develop new nature trails.”

Great Parks of Hamilton County was awarded the Frank F. Ferris II Community Planning Award from Hamilton County Department of Planning + Development for its comprehensive master plan. 

The Master Plan process includes shareholder interviews, surveys, workshops and events to incorporate public feedback as the plan moves forward.

“There is strong public support for conservation and preservation of natural lands. Eighty-four percent of survey respondents are supportive of Great Parks purchasing land that protects the environment,” Zelek said. “The community is most willing to support park facility updates and new trails with tax dollars. The top three community priorities for future investment are updated facilities, trails and greenways.”

The event will be held at UC's Center for Field Studies, 11053 Oxford Rd, Harrison, Ohio, at 2 p.m. Sunday, July 7.