Greening the City Parks & Recreation Master Plan Update

City of Manchester, NH

Applied Expertise

  • Parks and Open Space
  • Recreation
  • Streetscapes
  • Public Involvement
  • Market Analysis
  • Economic Development
  • Downtown Revitalization


Manchester is a former mill town, home of the Amoskeag Manufacturing Company on the Merrimack River. So paternal was the company that it took a hand in designing the young city as it grew, laying out a series of parks and squares linked by walkways throughout the city. By the end of the 20th Century this early example of green infrastructure eroded and the city’s parks were almost entirely dedicated to organized play. Our parks and recreation master plan is unique because it developed a typology encompassing seven types of parks in the city, assigning design standards and key attributes to each. The heritage park typology restored the city’s system of parks and squares, and other typologies addressed parks such as play, entertainment and conservation.

The project included a comprehensive inventory of existing facilities that resulted in a fully interactive on-line maintenance manual and recommendations for parks development potentials and analyses to determine appropriate tourism and economic development strategies for city parks. A five-year capital improvement plan included detailed recommendations, including associated costs and phasing. The city continues to use the typologies and has completed two major park master plans and numerous other parks projects.


2006 Merit Award, NY Upstate Chapter of the American Society of Landscape Architects

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