General Management Plan
The National Park Service (NPS) has released the Final General Management Plan and Environmental Impact Statement (GMP/EIS) for Effigy Mounds National Monument. This plan will set the tone for the management of the park for the next 15 to 20 years.
The plan emphasizes natural and cultural resource protection while providing for a variety of appropriate visitor experiences and public enjoyment. "It took a while to get here, and a few bumps were encountered along the way, but I believe we have developed a framework for ensuring the long-term preservation and public enjoyment of this remarkable part of Iowa," said Superintendent Jim Nepstad. "The plan benefitted greatly from public comments, consultation with associated tribes and state historic preservation agencies, and some honest reflection on what has or hasn't worked in the past."
Highlights of the GMP include improvements to the existing visitor center to provide a greater depth of information. Also, development of a small contact station and improved interpretive program at Sny Magill, improved access for hikers to the South Unit and the Heritage Addition, and the establishment of a virtual research center for information exchange on mound research and management in the region. The plan also zones the park in order to constrain development to appropriate levels and appropriate places.
Site-specific plans will need to be developed - with public involvement - to accomplish many of these things, resulting in numerous opportunities for interested parties to remain engaged in park planning efforts in the coming years. Many actions the GMP proposes will require special project funding, so it could be years before the plan is fully implemented. "The GMP is kind of like a road map," Nepstad continued. "It doesn't show every curve in the road, and it doesn't pay for your gas, but it still helps you eventually get to where you want to be."
To get a copy: The document is available for download at http://parkplanning.nps. gov/efmofingmp. For a paper copy of the plan, contact the park at 563-873-3491. For more information, or for questions about the General Management Plan, please conact Superintendent Jim Nepstad at e-mail us or 563-873-3491, extension 101.
Link to GMP: http://parkplanning.nps.gov/ efmofingmp
In November 2005, the park received comments from the public at several scoping meetings regarding what their vision of the park was in the future. These comments along with park staff suggestions were used to create three preliminary management alternatives for the park.