Policies & Plans

Seattle Parks and Recreation, in partnership with Seattle communities, develops plans  and policies in response to park development needs, changing technology, increasing population, and other changes our city experiences. Plans and policies can be specific to a park or citywide, and include  goals intended to keep Seattle livable. According to the American Planning Association, "Planning enables civic leaders, businesses, and citizens to play a meaningful role in creating communities that enrich people's lives. Good planning helps create communities that offer better choices for where and how people live. Planning helps communities to envision their future. It helps them find the right balance of new development and essential services, environmental protection, and innovative change." 

The purpose of the Off-Leash Areas Strategic plan is to identify a long term plan for the City’s existing 14 Off-Leash Areas, as well as for maintenance, acquisition, and expansion of Off-Leash Areas projects.
The Community Center Strategic Plan will lay the foundation for both operational and facility decision-making for the community center system in the future.
The intent of this effort is to develop values-based guidelines for the appropriate use of Seattle's Natural Areas and Greenbelts. This process will result in a vision for Natural Areas and Greenbelts that will maintain the native forest ecosystem, protect public safety and enhance positive uses over the long-term.
Over the next 9-12 months the Seattle Parks and Recreation Planning unit will be updating the Seattle Parks and Recreation 2011 Development Plan and An Assessment of Gaps in Seattle's Open Space Network: The 2011 Gap Report Update. These plans will identify demands, needs and priorities for parks acquisition and development projects over the next six years. A work plan and project schedule will be posted soon. There will be opportunities for community input to help form the plan.
Parks performed an analysis of national, regional and local recreation trends and conducted a citywide survey that gathered information on how our park system is used, frequency of use and park user's concerns. Phase three was a look to the future that provided a framework for a sustainable parks and recreation system. Download the final report for the complete results of the Legacy Plan development.
As a department we plan for the future by integrating an environmental ethic into our everyday activities. We know that small steps can have a big impact. This work does not happen on its own; it takes the care and commitment of parks professionals to select each tree that gets planted, develop a fieldtrip curriculum, operate a maintenance building thoughtfully and efficiently, and coordinate volunteers.
Are you a neighbor of City park land? City park lands include developed parks, playgrounds and trails, undeveloped greenspaces, and streets that have been designated as park boulevards. These park lands are Seattle's natural treasures and home to many native species of plants, birds and animals. To help preserve and protect these valuable areas, the Seattle Department of Parks and Recreation wants to work with neighbors and others who enjoy our parks to clarify boundaries and promote the proper use of park lands.
We're always working to conserve our natural resources and preserve our watershed.
The purpose of the tree management policy is to maintain, preserve and enhance the urban forest within parks. To increase the overall tree canopy, tree health and tree longevity within parks and to ensure that parks trees are managed in a manner that is consistent with other departmental and municipal policies.
The Horticulture Program has a long history in Seattle Parks and Recreation. Its heritage goes back to the beginning of 20th century when the Park Commission invited the Olmsted Brothers to plan and design the framework for the park system for the City of Seattle.
The Horticulture Program has a long history at Seattle Parks and Recreation. It began at the beginning of the 20th century when the Park Commission invited the Olmsted Brothers to plan and design the framework for the park and boulevard system for the City of Seattle. Our Best Management Practices guide our work in the management and maintenance of landscaped and natural park land .
The Seattle Parks and Recreation Department supports open government. We are committed to full disclosure of all non-exempt public records in the custody of the office upon request and strives to comply with both the letter and spirit of the Washington State Public Records Act, RCW Chapter 42.56.
In accordance with the requirements of Title II of the American Disabilities Act of 1990 Seattle Parks and Recreation has a policy of non-discrimination against persons with disabilities in its programs, services, and activities.
Seattle Parks & Recreation (SPR) Standards provide design and construction guidelines for Seattle Parks' facilities. These standardized requirements have proved successful during the design, construction, operation, and maintenance of Seattle Parks' facilities.
This page contains some of our most requested policies and planning documents. Please contact us if you have questions or need specific documents.