DNREC’s Division of Parks & Recreation to host open house July 30 on White Clay Creek State Park draft master plan

The Pomeroy Bridge within White Clay Creek State Park

DOVER – DNREC’s Division of Parks & Recreation has created a draft master plan for White Clay Creek State Park, and will host an open house for the public to provide comments and ask questions. The open house will be held from 5-7 p.m. Tuesday, July 30, at Deerfield, 507 Thompson Station Road, Newark, DE 19711.

DNREC Secretary Shawn M. Garvin announced in May 2018 that the Division of Parks & Recreation would create a master plan for the future of the park. The Division of Parks & Recreation previously held four open houses and also provided an online survey in 2018 to gather public input. More than 1,300 participants have provided feedback to date.

The draft master plan is available online at www.destateparks.com/whiteclaymasterplan. This webpage will be updated as the process moves forward.

More than 60 items are proposed in the draft master plan. Focus areas include:

  • The Nature Center and programming complex: Facility improvements, interpretive locations, and sustainable access are needed.
  • Park office move: The draft master plan calls for the park office to be moved to an existing building in the Carpenter Recreation Area, creating easier access for most park users.
  • Judge Morris area: A new partnership, with a special events business, is expected to revitalize the Judge Morris Estate.
  • Potential partnerships: The Division of Parks & Recreation will explore partnerships for the adaptive reuse of some buildings, and limited areas.
  • Natural and cultural stewardship: Actions are necessary to protect and enhance the native ecology and cultural history of the park.
  • Parking and vehicular ingress/egress: Among others, this recommendation includes the proposed closure of three segments of road to vehicle traffic, where it is currently restricted.
  • Signage and programming: This includes efforts to improve signage and information on natural and historic features, as well as trail etiquette.
  • Trail projects: An updated trail planning effort is incorporated into the draft master plan.
  • Camping: Camping opportunities are proposed to enhance visitors’ park experiences. More evaluation is needed to determine amenities to be offered and their scope.

Now that a draft master plan has been created, the Division of Parks & Recreation will again provide the opportunity for public involvement and will clarify next steps. These include:

  • 5-7 p.m., Tuesday, July 30 – The Division of Parks & Recreation will host the open house to take comments and answer questions from the public on the draft master plan.
  • 9:30 a.m., Thursday, Aug. 1 – The draft master plan will be presented to the Parks & Recreation Council, an 11-member board appointed by the Governor, that advises the Division of Parks & Recreation.
  • August 2019 – The Division of Parks & Recreation will make any necessary revisions to the draft, and the revised version will serve as the final draft master plan, which will be posted online on the DNREC website.
  • Late summer-early autumn 2019 – The Division of Parks & Recreation will host a public meeting on the final draft master plan, to provide the opportunity for any remaining public comments or questions to be heard and addressed.
  • Autumn 2019 – The director of the Division of Parks & Recreation will determine if the final draft master plan should be adopted.

The public is encouraged to submit comments or questions on the draft master plan, whether or not they can attend the open house. Comments can be emailed to DNREC_WCCmasterplan@delaware.gov, or sent by US Mail to: DNREC Division of Parks & Recreation, 89 Kings Highway, Dover, DE 19901, Attn: WCCSP Master Plan.

Media contact: Beth Shockley, DNREC Public Affairs, 302-739-9902

Vol. 49, No. 186

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DNREC seeks input on Coastal Zone Conversion Permit Act Regulatory Advisory Committee’s preliminary recommendations

Three open houses to be held Feb. 25, 26 and 27 in New Castle County 

DOVER – Delaware’s Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC) will hold three public open houses  in New Castle County this month – on Feb. 25, 26 and 27 – seeking input on preliminary recommendations made by the Coastal Zone Conversion Permit Act Regulatory Advisory Committee.

The Coastal Zone Conversion Permit Act requires DNREC to develop and promulgate regulations for the redevelopment of 14 heavy industry use sites in Delaware’s Coastal Zone by Oct. 1, 2019. The Regulatory Advisory Committee was convened by DNREC in June 2018 to provide recommendations regarding the regulations.

The open houses will present the Committee’s preliminary recommendations for the public to review and provide comment. The open houses will be held from 5-8 p.m. on these three dates:

  • Monday, Feb. 25, Claymont Community Center, 3301 Green Street, Claymont, DE 19703
  • Tuesday, Feb. 26, Delaware City Fire Hall, 815 5th Street, Delaware City, DE 19706
  • Wednesday, Feb. 27, Elbert Palmer Elementary School, 1210 Lobdell Street, Wilmington, DE 19801

Members of the public may attend at any point and for any length of time during the open houses.

Each open house will follow the same format. Attendees will be able to view a video presentation about the legislative changes and the process leading to the Regulatory Advisory Committee’s preliminary recommendations. Attendees will also be able to walk around and visit various informational booths that explain the different aspects of the Committee’s preliminary recommendations. Attendees will be able to provide input on feedback forms. The forms will be available at the workshop as well as on DNREC’s website prior to the events.

Public input gathered at the workshops will be compiled by the Consensus Building Institute (CBI), a non-profit organization that has facilitated the Regulatory Advisory Committee’s meetings. CBI will compile all public input into a report and provide the report to the Committee for its consideration before finalizing its recommendations to DNREC. DNREC will also make the report available for the public to view on its website.

For more information on the Coastal Zone Conversion Permit Act Regulatory Advisory Committee, please visit www.de.gov/czcparac. To receive updates on the regulatory process for developing conversion permits, you can also subscribe to the Coastal Zone Act email listserv by sending a blank email to join-dnrec_coastal_zone@lists.state.de.us.

Contact: Joanna Wilson, DNREC Public Affairs, 302-739-9902.

Vol. 49, No. 26

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DNREC Division of Parks & Recreation to hold Aug. 20 open house on recreation opportunities at White Clay Creek State Park

DOVER – The fourth and final open house to gather public input on creating a master plan for the future of White Clay Creek State Park in Newark will be held 4-7 p.m., Monday Aug. 20, at Deerfield, 507 Thompson Station Road, Newark, DE 19711.

DNREC Secretary Shawn M. Garvin announced in May that DNREC’s Division of Parks & Recreation is beginning the process of creating a master plan for the future of the park and will be holding four open houses this summer to gather public input before a plan is drafted.

The Aug. 20 open house will focus on current and future recreational opportunities in the park, seeking public input on topics such as disc golfing, camping, concerts and events, hunting, fishing, visiting historic sites, and various types of trail use. Displays showing existing recreational opportunities will be provided for discussion, and staff will be available to answer questions. The open houses are an opportunity for members of the public to convey what they enjoy about the park and what concerns or ideas they might have for the future. This is an important, initial step in the planning process.

Following the Aug. 20 open house, the Division will begin to create a draft master plan, and hold an open house or workshop on that draft plan. The Division will then refine the draft master plan, and hold a formal public meeting before a final plan is adopted. The open house for the preliminary draft master plan and the formal public meeting for the final draft master plan are expected to be held this fall and winter. The Division will announce these events in advance.

White Clay Creek State Park is the second-largest park in DNREC’s park system. The park hosts more than 322,000 visitors each year and contains the most trail miles. The park also holds popular summer concerts, a well-attended summer camp program, the high school cross-country state meet, and other events. Visitors enjoy birding, mountain biking, hiking, fishing, and horseback riding.

The public is encouraged to participate in a brief online survey to provide initial comments. It will close near the end of August for analysis. A second survey with more specific questions will be developed and announced in late summer/early fall. To submit general comments, please email DNREC_WCCmasterplan@delaware.gov, or write to DNREC-DPR, 89 Kings Highway, Dover, DE 19901, Attn: WCCSP Master Plan.

The public is also encouraged to visit http://www.dnrec.delaware.gov/parks/Information/Pages/White-Clay-Creek-State-Park-Master-Plan.aspx for the latest information and updates, and to check back frequently for the latest news and draft documents for review once developed.

Contact: Beth Shockley, DNREC Public Affairs, 302-739-9902

Vol.48, No. 222


DNREC Division of Parks & Recreation to hold Aug. 1 open house on roads and trails for White Clay Creek State Park

DOVER – The third of four open houses to gather public input on creating a master plan for the future of White Clay Creek State Park in Newark will be held 4-7 p.m., Wednesday Aug. 1, at Deerfield, 507 Thompson Station Road, Newark, DE 19711.

DNREC Secretary Shawn M. Garvin announced in May that DNREC’s Division of Parks & Recreation is beginning the process of creating a master plan for the future of the park and will be holding four open houses this summer to gather public input before a plan is drafted.

The Aug. 1 open house will focus on roads and trails, for public input on topics such locations, surfacing, widths, uses, and connectivity. Posters on existing roads and trails will be provided for discussion, and staff will be available to answer questions. The open houses are an opportunity for members of the public to convey what they enjoy about the park and what concerns or ideas they might have for the future. This is an important, initial step in the planning process.

The fourth and final open house is scheduled from 4-7 p.m., Monday, Aug. 20, at Deerfield focusing on current and future recreation opportunities in the park.

White Clay Creek State Park is the second-largest park in DNREC’s park system. The park hosts more than 322,000 visitors each year and contains the most trail miles. The park also holds popular summer concerts, a well-attended summer camp program, the high school cross-country state meet, and other events. Visitors enjoy birding, mountain biking, hiking, fishing, and horseback riding.

In addition to the open houses, the public is encouraged to participate in a brief online survey to provide comments. A second survey with more specific questions will be developed later. To submit general comments, please email DNREC_WCCmasterplan@delaware.gov, or write to DNREC-DPR, 89 Kings Highway, Dover, DE 19901, Attn: WCCSP Master Plan.

The public is also encouraged to visit the White Clay Creek State Park Master Plan web page  for the latest information and updates, and to check back frequently for the latest news and draft documents for review once developed. In addition to the webpage, announcements will be made by DNREC press releases, signs in the park, and other means.

Media Contact: Beth Shockley, DNREC Public Affairs, 302-739-9902


DNREC Division of Parks & Recreation’s first open house on developing new master plan for White Clay Creek State Park to be held June 25

DOVER – The first of four open houses to get public input on creating a master plan for the future of White Clay Creek State Park in Newark will be held 4-7 p.m. Monday June 25, at Deerfield, 507 Thompson Station Road, Newark, DE 19711.

DNREC Secretary Shawn M. Garvin announced last month that the Division of Parks & Recreation is beginning the process of creating a master plan for the future of the park and will be holding four open houses this summer to gather public input for the plan.

“The purpose of the master plan is to provide a vision and a framework for the stewardship and use of White Clay Creek State Park,” said Secretary Garvin. “A unified set of objectives will improve collaboration and coordination among staff, organizations, volunteers and visitors, as well as provide clearer expectations for the park. These open houses are an important, initial step in the planning process, as we work together to create a path forward.”

The open house on June 25 will focus on natural resources and interpretation, for public input on topics such as habitat, farming, ponds and streams, historical and natural programming.

The open houses are an opportunity for members of the public to convey what they enjoy about the park and what concerns or ideas they might have for the future. This will help to inform the development of a draft plan.

White Clay Creek State Park is the second largest park in DNREC’s park system. The park hosts more than 322,000 visitors each year and contains the most trail miles. The park also holds popular summer concerts, a well-attended summer camp program, the high school cross-country state meet, and other events. Visitors enjoy birding, mountain biking, hiking, fishing, and horseback riding.

The next three open houses are tentatively scheduled from 4-7 p.m. at Deerfield, 507 Thompson Station Road, Newark, DE 19711 on the following dates:

  • July 10: Focused on buildings and infrastructure; for public input on topics including the Nature Center, the park office, use of buildings, and current and future concessionaires.
  • Aug. 1: Focused on roads and trails; for public input on topics including roads, trails, and connectivity.
  • Aug. 20: Focused on recreation; for input on topics such as golfing, fishing, visiting historic sites, and events.

In addition to the open houses, the public is encouraged to participate in a brief online survey to provide initial comments. A second survey will be developed with more specific questions later in the process.

The public is also encouraged to visit www.destateparks.com/whiteclaymasterplan for the latest information and updates and to check back frequently for the latest news and draft documents for review once developed. In addition to the webpage, announcements will be made by DNREC press release, signs in the park, and other means.

Anyone who would like to submit general comments can email to DNREC_WCCmasterplan@delaware.gov, or write to DNREC-DPR, 89 Kings Highway, Dover, DE 19901, Attn: WCCSP Master Plan.

CONTACT: Beth Shockley, DNREC Public Affairs, 302-739-9902

Vol. 48, No. 160