May 1, 2015
Contact: Kathleen Sandt, Public Affairs Specialist
, (570) 426-2472 (O); (570) 234-9144 (C)
Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area Superintendent John J. Donahue announced today that the preliminary public input period for the Visitor Use Management Plan (VUM Plan) has been extended until May 15, 2015. The National Park Service (NPS) is developing a comprehensive plan to more effectively and efficiently manage visitor use at Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area and Middle Delaware National Scenic and Recreational River. The purpose of the plan, which is scheduled to be completed by 2017, is to maximize the ability of the NPS to encourage access and protect the park's natural and cultural resources. The planning process will examine current and potential visitor opportunities and develop long-term strategies for providing access, connecting visitors to important experiences, and managing visitor use.
"I want to thank everyone who came to the meetings or commented online for taking the time to participate in this important process," said Superintendent Donahue. "Because interest in this project has been so high, we are extending the original public input period by 2 weeks to give more people the opportunity to provide comments and suggestions." The public can go to www.parkplanning.nps.gov
to view recorded presentations from the meetings and provide input.
A report will be generated that summarizes all of the input received through April 30th. Due to the fast pace of this project, the input posted after May 1st may not appear in the summary report from the public listening sessions but will be included in the development of potential management strategies for the draft Visitor Use Management Plan. The summary report will be posted in June.
This preliminary information gathering stage was the initial step in the planning process. Formal scoping and public comment periods on potential management strategies are tentatively scheduled for August and visitor surveys will be conducted this summer.