Request for Input from APA Members

GIS Data Standards for Parks,
Trails, and Recreational Facilities

Deadline for comment: November 21, 2008

The National Recreation and Park Association — together with a group of stakeholders that includes APA — is working to develop a set of data content standards for GIS related to parks, trails, and recreation facilities.

APA members are invited to review a set of draft attributes for parks and trails, and provide comments on them by November 21, 2008.


The National Recreation and Park Association (NRPA) understands the need for synchronization in the way information about parks, trails, and recreation facilities is captured and stored. It is leading an effort to improve the consistency of information that local governments, organizations, and other government entities maintain about these resources. This includes identifying and defining a basic set of information that agencies should capture about their park, trail, and recreation facilities.

Consistency in this type of information will allow for better local, regional, and statewide management and planning of park and recreation resources. It will also enhance the accuracy and comparison of park resources when displayed spatially using GIS mapping technology.

Representatives from government agencies and organizations throughout the country are reviewing standards and practices, and will propose one set of attributes and values as the standard to be used or adopted wherever possible. Attributes are types of information about a resource; for example, park size or park type. Values are predefined responses for an attribute or instructions on how the attribute should be reported, such as park size reported in acres versus square feet. The final set of attributes and values along with templates for use by agencies will be provided as part of the standard.

How to Provide Comments

To download and submit review materials visit

Project Supporters

This project is being conducted with support from NRPA's American Park and Recreation Society and National Society for Park Resources Branches as well as a group of key stakeholders that include state, county, special district, and local governments.

Stakeholders also include the American Planning Association, American Society of Landscape Architects, National Association of State Outdoor Recreation Liaison Officers, National Association of Recreation Resource Planners, Rails-to-Trails Conservancy, Trust for Public Land, National Park Service (LWCF office), and NRPA's state affiliates.

Representatives from these stakeholders serve on an advisory committee to this project and a smaller group of individuals serves as the task force to develop the draft attributes and values.

Learn More

Learn more about the entire project and other ways to contribute or participate at