URPL 912

Planning Workshop: The 2011-2016 Wisconsin Statewide Comprehensive Outdoor Recreation Plan

Syllabus (Fall, 2010), Resource page (Fall, 2010)



The specific planning project serving as this Fall's Workshop involves development of the 2011-2016 Wisconsin Statewide Outdoor Recreation Plan (WiscSCORP).  This represents a real-world, real-time, and policy relevant planning exercise that will have impacts on a wide array of statewide activities; not the least of which is the availability and use of outdoor recreation opportunities throughout the state for the foreseeable future.

Based on the current WiscSCORP scope of work, the instructors have selected four sub-issues to be addressed in specific team projects.  While each team project will be viewed as a stand-alone output for purposes of team evaluation, there is a strong expectation that the four teams will act collaboratively to achieve a coherent and well-integrated set of reports that can be used in the formal WiscSCORP.  The formal WiscSCORP is a broader 18 month project initiated during the summer of 2010.  For Fall Semester 2010, the four specific team projects selected for the Planning Workshop include the following (click on a project for each team's page):

1. Goals and Objectives in Outdoor Recreation Planning
This team will focus on public participation elements pertinent to the comprehensive outdoor recreation planning process.  Specifically, information will be collected, synthesized, and written for inclusion as the outdoor recreation goals and objective setting section of the WiscSCORP.  This comprehensive planning process element will be accomplished through interaction with the array of outdoor recreation stakeholder groups and aided by discussions with the external WiscSCORP Advisory Panel and internal working groups.  Team members will work to match goals and objectives with the ongoing applied research on outdoor recreation demand (conducted by the USDA Forest Service), health and wellness indicators (#2 and #3 below) and regional distinctions between urban and rural populations (#4 below).  As this is a central process element of the SCORP, close coordination between the WiscSCORP Advisory Panel, WDNR, and UW-Madison.

2. Outdoor Recreation, Health, and Wellness:  Understanding Key Relationships
This team will develop existing spatial data on (1) outdoor recreation facilities, (2) public health metrics, and (3) selected demographic variables.  These data will then be analyzed for relevant correlations and relationships.  Existing 2005 -2010 SCORP outdoor recreational facility data will be used to match against County health data (from the University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute and others).

3. Outdoor Recreation, Health, and Wellness:  Enhancing the Relationship through SCORP
The organizations that manage outdoor recreation opportunities should plan, manage, lead, and evaluate for health benefits.  This team will be responsible for developing information and data on Wisconsin-specific outdoor recreation activities with respect to relevant health and wellness metrics.  Once developed, this team will work to incorporate these metrics into usable planning frameworks within which to evaluate public health and wellness outcomes of outdoor recreation facilities. Ultimately, this team will seek to identify potential gaps of recreational facilities in relationship to health indicators of a particular County as developed in #2 above. The desired outcome of this work will be to identify and target specific regions for priority health benefits from placement of appropriate outdoor recreation facilities.

4. The Evaluation of Urban Park and Greenway Open Spaces
Use of local city parks, recreation services, and greenway open spaces is much more frequent than are visits to state and national parks.  Proximity to local parks, playgrounds, and other outdoor recreation resources is a critical variable for participating in regular outdoor physical activity. This provides a key opportunity to evaluate widespread health and wellness benefits of outdoor recreation.  Incorporating outdoor recreation into the daily routine of urban residents will be the focus of this team’s work.  The 2005-2010 SCORP captured supply elements from 1,800 units of government across Wisconsin. This team will separate out cities within this existing dataset to evaluate urban parklands and greenway open spaces. These urban areas will be segmented into similar population size groupings to allow for better comparisons. A regional location quotient metric will be used to compare urban parklands and greenway open spaces to identify shortages within these urban areas.