Next public meeting set for Aug. 3 at Collett Street Recreation Center

The City of Morganton Parks and Recreation Master Plan is moving forward. About 70 people came out to the Mountain View Recreation Center Thursday night, June 8, to hear an update about the plan and provide input on what they want to see happen with City parks and recreation programs now and in the next 20 years.


Parks and Recreation Director Rob Winkler talks with attendees at the June 8 Public Meeting.

Parks and Recreation Director Rob Winkler talks with attendees at the June 8 Public Meeting. Look at more photos and tag people you know on our Facebook page i FaceBook 16x16.


The consultants - Toole Design Group and The Landplan Group South – were hired by the City earlier this year; the group started gathering research for the plan in April, and will continue the research phase through July 4.

During the June 8 meeting, Rick McMackin, Project Manager, RLA, LandPlanSouth, shared the group’s progress so far. The consultants have held multiple meetings with the public, stake holders, the master plan steering committee, and City staff; they have visited all city parks and facilities and completed a park inventory, and they created and public input survey. The public has turned in more than 340 completed surveys so far.

McMackin said his team collected more than 100 of those surveys during a “greenway intercept” held Saturday June 3 on the Catawba River Greenway. A couple surveys surveys that day was a family of five from Hickory who carted their bikes all the way to Morganton to ride the greenway.


20170615 cyclists on the greenway

A family cycling on the greenway Saturday, June 3, stopped to fill out a survey and talk to the consultants. Look at more photos and tag people you know on our Facebook page i FaceBook 16x16.


During the June 8 meeting, attendees answer several questions and posted comments on displays of the City’s various parks and facilities.

When asked, “When you hear the word “park,” what do you think about?” the top choice was “nature/outdoors” followed by “physical activity.” More than half the audience said they visit a City park at least once a week, and 37% go multiple times a week. The top priority of the attendees were “trails and greenways” followed by “passive park areas.” Check out the answers to all the poll questions at http://bit.ly/prmpjune8.


20170615 rec master plan meeting survey answers

Check out the answers to all the poll questions at http://bit.ly/prmpjune8. Look at more photos and tag people you know on our Facebook page i FaceBook 16x16.


Parks and Recreation Director Rob Winkler said the project is moving along nicely and the consultants have gathered a lot of good data.

“I think the Master Plan process is progressing very well,” Winkler said. “I cannot express how important it is for our citizens to attend the public meetings and fill out the surveys, and I want to thank everyone who has already completed a survey.” 

The consultants will hold another intercept to get public input Tuesday, July 4, during the Independence Day Celebration at Catawba Meadows Park. This is the final day of the Red, White, and Bluegrass Festival and is FREE to the public.

The survey will be available online through July 4, so the public still has time to give feedback. But don’t wait too long, go ahead and complete the online survey at http://bit.ly/morgantonrecsurvey, or pick up and turn in a paper copy at City Hall or the City recreation centers.

After the group completes the research phase, they’ll analyze their data and begin to draft their recommendations on programming, parks, and facilities. They plan to answer questions such as: Does Morganton need different kinds of programming or more community events? Are our parks and gyms in good shape? Do we need more connectivity between our facilities? Are we getting the message out about our current programs, events, and parks?  The group also will make park and facility improvement recommendations, propose park development priorities, propose park master plan diagrams, and give opinions of probable construction costs for proposed improvements.

The group will hold its next public meeting at 6:00 pm Thursday, Aug. 3, at the Collett Street Recreation Center in downtown where they will present their findings and make preliminary recommendations. They plan to present a final report and Master Plan to the City Council in September or October this year.

Stay up-to-date on the Parks and Recreation Master Plan at http://bit.ly/ParksRecMasterPlan17

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