Newton Open Space and Recreation Plan – Comment on Draft

The City of Newton invites all residents to comment on the Draft 2020-2027 Open Space and Recreation Plan. Please send comments to:  [email protected] . Public comment will be accepted until May 18th, 2020

Full report here: http://www.newtonma.gov/civica/filebank/blobdload.asp…

If you have only a short time to review the document, our partners at Newton Safe Routes to School recommend reading Chapter 9, which presents goals and their related actions, is a good place to focus. The main item of note for Safe Routes to School is Goal 5, “Connectivity” (page 7).

  • Section 7, page 8, outlines need.
  • Section 8, page 2, defines goal.
  • Section 9, outlines implementation.

From Section 8:
Goal 5: CONNECTIVITY: Linked open space resources with accessible paths, bike lanes, and trails.

Connectivity was a theme that emerged as residents noted their desires for better bike and pedestrian access to Newton’s open space resources. It was oft noted that better bicycle and pedestrian access would serve all of Newton: underserved areas, disabled residents, older residents, families, able-bodied residents, school age children, and local businesses. Many of Newton’s open spaces are primarily accessed by cars. Improved, safe, “quiet” sidewalks, trails and paths that connect these resources and promote passive recreation would be a boon for Newton. Implementing wayfinding and navigation measures within these improved/expanded connections will be highly beneficial to the City. Newton will strive to continue to improve bike and pedestrian safety, bike and pedestrian linkages between open spaces and schools, and connectivity for populations with limited access to open space.

Connected natural areas also contribute to the area’s overall ecological health by providing corridors for safe wildlife passage. Wildlife corridors ensure greater biodiversity, enabling the survival of species that are threatened by human development.”

The OSRP is an important municipal planning document. It provides an inventory of all existing areas of recreational use and open space (City owned and privately owned) and a list of goals and priorities for municipal actions regarding land acquisitions, recreational facility and open space improvements, and accessibility improvements