Wind Cave National Park's planing documents or current plans or projects can be found at: http://parkplanning.nps.gov/wica
An Environmental Assessment (EA) is a planning tool that is used to explore alternatives and determine whether those alternatives will have significant impacts. EAs are made available to the public for review and comment. If the EA reveals that the proposed action will have a significant impact, an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) must be prepared (see next section). If the EA reveals that there will not be significant impacts, a decision document is prepared and signed (see below).
Environmental Impact Statements
At the conclusion of an EIS, a Record of Decision (ROD) must be signed. The ROD describes the ultimate choice of an alternative, mitigation measures to reduce impacts, and the decision rationale. The ROD is signed by the Regional Director of the National Park Service.
Development Concept Plans
Wind Cave National Park Visitor Services Project The Visitor Services Project (VSP) is an ongoing research project of the National Park Service (NPS) Social Science Program that provides superintendents with usable knowledge about visitors. The VSP uses customized questionnaires during a 7- to 10-day period (occasionally longer) that is chosen by park managers. Wind Cave National Park had such a study completed in 2010.
Economic Impact Analysis As part of the VSP project, the park also had an Economic Impact Analysis done. The report uses the Money Generation Model 2 (MGM2), developed specifically for the National Park Service by Dr Daniel Stynes at Michigan State University, to estimate the economic impacts of park visitor spending. MGM2 uses VSP visitor studies along with a county-level, imput-output economic model (IMPLAN) to model how money spent by visitors flows through the economy supporting local jobs and businesses. Click on the above link to view Wind Cave National Park's impact on visitor spending on the local economy.
An ethnographic study of the park was completed in 2003 by Patricia C. Albers. To read the study click on this link. The Home of the Bison: An Ethnographic and Ethnohistorical Study of Traditional Cultural Affiliations to Wind Cave National Park.
Did You Know?
Fire is an important factor in protecting the prairie. Historically, fires burned across the prairie every 4 to 7 years. Fires burn the small trees that would otherwise march across the prairie and turn the grasslands to forest.