Open Space Planning

Greater Philadelphia’s preserved open spaces contribute to local economies and property values, reduce healthcare and recreation costs, protect valuable habitats, and naturally improve the air and water. DVRPC maintains an inventory of the region’s preserved open spaces, and offers other open space planning resources such as funding programs, research, and tools.


Open Space Inventory

DVRPC maintains an inventory of protected public and private open space in the Delaware Valley. The inventory tracks all publicly-owned open space, preserved farmland, and non profit protected open space. State, county and municipal programs preserve farms by purchasing development rights with public funds. Non-profits (land trusts and conservancies) protect privately owned open space lands by purchasing easements or by acquiring land outright with a combination of public and private funds.

Local Open Space Funding Programs

In both primary and general elections, municipalities ask voters to dedicate funding or increase taxes for open space and farmland preservation.

Greenspace Network

The Greenspace Network links parkland, population centers and key natural resource areas into a unified system. Linking "green spaces" throughout the region boosts their ecological, recreational, scenic and economic value.

Economic Value of Open Space

DVRPC and the GreenSpace Alliance (GSA) partnered to produce Return on Environment - The Economic Value of Protected Open Space in Southeastern Pennsylvania. The project demonstrates that Greater Philadelphia’s protected open spaces—public parks, preserved farmland and land trust owned and eased lands—provide substantial economic, environmental and public health benefits to the region's households, governments and businesses.

Open Space Coordinating Committees

Periodically, DVRPC convenes a committee of open space and farmland preservation professionals who work at nonprofits and government agencies. At these meetings, we learn about interesting initiatives or recent studies, share updates from our organizations or agencies, and find opportunities to coordinate or collaborate with our partners and neighbors.