NYC’s forested natural areas provide important benefits to the city including high-quality recreation, enhanced biodiversity, and improved air and water quality. The Natural Areas Conservancy (NAC) and the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation (NYC Parks) have developed a 25-year Forest Management Framework intended to guide the restoration and management of NYC Parks’ 7,300 acres of forested natural areas. The framework, NYC’s first citywide forest management
plan, is based on new comprehensive data that includes ecological conditions and visitor perceptions and experiences. The framework categorizes the condition of forests in more
than 50 parks across the five boroughs, based on metrics for ecological health and threat. Each condition category was correlated with best practices, staffing and contractual structures, and cost estimates. This approach facilitates the prioritization of future restoration activities, the ability to track changes in forest health over time, and the ability to estimate the level of investment needed to maximize ecological condition and visitor experience at the scale of a park, borough, or city. The
framework calls for an investment of $385 million over 25 years to ensure that our city’s forests achieve their full potential for recreation and conservation.