Master Plan

We're Planning For the Future

The Forest Preserve District invited DuPage County residents and forest preserve fans to help it determine which projects and initiatives to address over the next five years as part of a master plan. We sent surveys to randomly selected DuPage households, offered an online survey and hosted community meetings. We also accepted comments by email.

Our online survey closed mid-December 2017, and we heard from more than 6,500 individuals.

Our Planning department provided the Board of Commissioners a presentation about gathering input from the public (PDF) in February 2018.  

The department presented its Community Survey and Assessment Summary (PDF) in April 2018. This summary contains results from the surveys and community meetings, which were administered by a consultant. A complete summary of all input gathering activities is compiled in the Community Input Summary (PDF).

Planning provided the Master Plan Analysis (PDF) update in June 2018. This overview includes national trends, state and local priorities, and a peer agency comparison.

A draft of the master plan goals and objectives (PDF) was proposed in July 2018, and the Board of Commissioners approved the goals and objectives in early September 2018.

Staff is working toward presenting a master plan draft by the end of 2018.


Master Plan Goals and Objectives

Approved September 4, 2018 

Goal 1: Preserve, protect and restore open spaces

Objective 1.1: Allocate additional resources to maintain existing high-quality natural areas and create new ones

Objective 1.2: Promote the recovery of threatened and endangered species

Objective 1.3: Collaborate with other organizations to further countywide restoration of natural areas

Objective 1.4: Focus future potential land-acquisition efforts on high-quality natural areas from willing sellers           

Goal 2: Help people cultivate a lifelong enthusiasm for nature by offering meaningful, first-rate outdoor recreation and learning experiences

Objective 2.1: Improve the preserve experience by modernizing amenities (flush restrooms, drinking water, signs, etc.)

Objective 2.2: Create trail links that connect key recreational sites and regional trails to major residential, commercial and institutional areas

Objective 2.3: Complement and expand existing recreational offerings with increasing participation rates and more social interaction (water and winter sports, camping, backpacking, rentals, recreation instruction, class-based recreation)

Objective 2.4: Enhance and promote unstructured nature exploration

Goal 3: Improve preserves to increase access, use, efficiency and productivity

Objective 3.1: Improve education centers and recreational sites

Objective 3.2:  Evaluate and invest in maintenance and operations buildings as well as infrastructure

Objective 3.3: Modify forest preserve facilities to accommodate a diverse range of users

Objective 3.4: Maintain environmental protections at landfill sites and implement compatible uses for related open spaces when feasible

Goal 4: Refocus resources by reducing infrastructures and tasks not related to the mission

Objective 4.1: Evaluate and eliminate infrastructures and buildings that do not actively support significant operations

Objective 4.2: Reevaluate operations to increase efficiency and productivity (mowing, consolidated storage, underused parking, etc.) and to reduce the maintenance of areas not critical to the mission

Objective 4.3: Refine programs to reflect the Forest Preserve District’s mission, research in natural resources and expertise

Objective 4.4: Evaluate and make recommendations for historic holdings

Goal 5: Foster community engagement and increase awareness of the Forest Preserve District

Objective 5.1: Engage and seek continual feedback from the public and internal and external stakeholders

Objective 5.2: Evaluate marketing strategies and promote consistent branding (website, printed publications, signs, etc.)

Goal 6: Use effective and innovative methods to execute the master plan while continuing on sound financial footing

Objective 6.1: Develop a long-term financial plan consistent with funding availability and financial projections to implement the master plan

Objective 6.2: Formulate short-term financial plans that incrementally implement master plan goals

Objective 6.3: Monitor the implementation of master plan goals