JoCo Parks and Recreation Master Plan
In 2013 the Johnston County Recreation & Sports Council was created. At the time, the Johnston County Visitors Bureau (JCVB) was looking to market the county’s sports facilities to group tournament organizers and to work to grow and maintain parks and natural spaces throughout the county. An ad-hoc committee was formed with members at large from all over the county, as well as representatives from many of the parks & rec departments and County Commissioners.
During the first few meetings of the Sports Council, it became clear that there was a lot of need to organize at the county level. Recreational facilities across the county were in need of updates. The Mountains to Sea Trail group was gathering momentum to complete the trail; and there was a gap in the trail between Clayton and Smithfield. Lots of cyclists were coming in and out of the county and the first project of the group was creating the JoCo Bike Routes. The council realized that not only was the forming of the council necessary to promote teamwork and cohesion across the county, but that a Parks & Recreation Master Plan was needed. The original master plan was completed in 2015, but was not adopted. In 2020, it was determined the master plan needed to be updated.
Adrian O’Neal was hired as the Johnston County Parks, Greenways, and Open-Spaces Coordinator to fulfill this requirement and have the plan adopted by the commissioners.
Adrian's background includes working for state parks for 27 years and working in every aspect of natural resources. The purpose of his position currently is to facilitate the growth of county-owned assets, as well as being the one point of contact with organizations like the Mountains to Sea Trail, East Coast Greenway, and Friends of Johnston County Parks. During his first year in the role, he has become more familiar with the county's physical assets which gave him an idea about what we’re lacking as a county and what our strengths are.
You can read more about what Adrian does by reading our blog.
Parks, Greenways, and Open-Spaces Coordinator
A master plan can guide an organization or community through a project as people and positions change so that the end goals are realized in a cohesive manner. For example, the parks & rec master plan makes sure that throughout the entire county and all our municipal departments and various organizations, that everything we are doing compliments each other.
Johnston County can always use the help of its citizens and visitors by being active and using the existing resources in place in the county. If you see any issues, make sure to report it so that we can make sure that our natural spaces and sports facilities are in the best shape they can be in.
If you would like to apply to be on the Sports Council, click the image below to download the application: