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News: City of Bristol Department of Parks, Recreation, Youth and Community Services Formally Adopts Master Plan

Date Published Author
3/4/2021 12:00:00 AM   

City of Bristol Department of Parks, Recreation, Youth and Community Services
Formally Adopts Master Plan

Bristol, CT., March 3, 2021 – After over a year of extensive staff, community, and stakeholder engagement, the Board of Park Commissioners unanimously adopted the City of Bristol Parks, Recreation, Youth and Community Services (BPRYCS) department Master Plan at their February meeting. The Master Plan is a high level guiding document that outlines and details the future of operations and investments in Bristol parks.

master plan
Superintendent of Parks, Recreation, Youth and Community Services Dr. Joshua Medeiros stated, “We are so pleased to have a formal plan in place that will help guide the work of our staff over the next 5-10 years. The creation of the plan took over a year and included significant community engagement including, but not limited to, park site evaluations, a statistically valid community needs assessment survey, dozens of interviews with staff, stakeholders and community groups. In many ways the master plan is a community plan and it’s our team’s job to execute the community’s vision for its parks, programs and services”.

In December of 2019, BPRYCS hired a national consulting firm PROS Consulting, INC and Activitas, landscape architecture and civil engineering firm to help guide the planning process. The firm worked with department leadership to develop an in-depth site plan for Page Park, inventoried and evaluated the condition of all city parks and facilities, reviewed open space properties, established maintenance standards, sustainability plans and green initiatives, programming recommendations, ADA transition planning for accessibility and assisted in the establishment of goal setting and project prioritization
based on statistically valid community data.

Superintendent Medeiros remarked, “This is the first time that the department has ever had a systems wide community driven master plan and we couldn’t be more excited about it. Not only is master planning an industry best practice but it will help us achieve CAPRA (Commission for Accreditation of Park and Recreation Agencies) next year and will allow us to more efficiently and effectively budget for capital improvement projects”.

The information generated from this planning process was reviewed by City staff, the Mayor’s office, the Board of Park Commissioners, as well as posted online for public review and comment.

Some of the key findings from the master plan included a strong need for dedicated indoor recreation space, ADA upgrades to make the parks fully accessible and inclusive, a need to repair existing facilities, field and courts that have significant damage. “The public also indicated a strong desire for increasing trail systems, biking connectivity, and outdoor adventure opportunities,” said Mayor Ellen Zoppo-Sassu,who chairs the Parks Commission. “The plan also includes goals and objectives in areas of program and facility development, communication, partnerships, barriers to access, and public perception. BPRYCS staff will use this information to develop an internal Strategic Plan, analyze operations, and manage budget requests and expenditures in the future.”

To view the Parks, Recreation, Youth and Community Services Master Plan in its entirety, as well as completed technical reports, site analyses, and community input, please visit