Land Acquisition and Planning


The Stewardship Division:

  • Administers Department-wide Stewardship Teams who review and prioritize department acquisitions
  • Oversees the Resident Curatorship Program
  • Conducts trail planning
  • Prepares the State’s Land Preservation and Recreation Plan (LPRP), including providing technical assistance to local governments in the preparation of their Local Land Preservation, Parks and Recreation Plan.

Preservation and Recreation Survey

Photo collage of recreational activity in Maryland 

Thank you for sharing your thoughts on land acquisition, conservation and recreation in the state. The results of the survey will be tabulated and used to develop the new Maryland Land Preservation and Recreation 5-Year Plan.

 Cover of the 2014-2018 Land Preservation & Recreation Plan Maryland Land Preservation and Recreation Plan 2014-2018

The Land Preservation and Recreation Plan is prepared every five years to identify essential and contemporary issues impacting outdoor recreation and natural resource protection in Maryland. This Plan was developed using public input gathered through surveys, stakeholder meetings and thorough analysis of national, state and local issues impacting recreation and natural resource conservation.

The Land Preservation and Recreation Plan will help guide land conservation and development of outdoor recreation opportunities over the next five years and builds upon the America's Great Outdoors Initiative to include proactive approaches to address critical issues identified in the planning process. The Plan aims to: provide Maryland’s citizens and visitors with safe and easily accessible amenities; encourage the enjoyment and stewardship of Maryland’s natural world; and balance outdoor recreation land use with natural and cultural resource protection. It also serves as Maryland’s Statewide Comprehensive Outdoor Recreation Plan and qualifies the state to receive funding through the federal Land and Water Conservation Fund. Click here for more information about the Land and Water Conservation Fund and assistance grants in Maryland.

Please click here to read the Maryland Land Preservation and Recreation Plan.

Local Land Preservation, Parks, and Recreation Plans

Public parks and recreation facilities, and lands preserved for their agricultural and natural resource values provide Maryland residents and visitors with a wide array of services that benefit their quality of life. These places and amenities help create healthier communities, stimulate local economies and are vital pieces of community infrastructure. Land Preservation, Parks and Recreation Plans (LPPRPs) are an important resource and mechanism through which county governments and the City of Baltimore can evaluate and update their baseline information on key issues, trends and plans for managing and enhancing the systems of preserved public lands, parks and recreation facilities in their jurisdictions. These Plans can and should be a resource that provides county and state leaders and the general public with a clear understanding of the county or City’s goals, strategies and priorities for investing to improve parks and recreation facilities and open spaces for the public benefit.

Information from the LPPRPs guides land conservation and parks and recreation planning and decision making within each county, City of Baltimore and the Maryland Department of Natural Resources, and is important to the work of the Maryland Department of Planning. The preparation and/or regular update of an LPPRP is a prerequisite for county participation in Maryland’s Program Open Space Localside program [per Section 5-905(b) (2) of the Natural Resources Article – Annotated Code of Maryland], which provides annual grants for the acquisition of land for conservation and park purposes as well as for the development of public recreation facilities. LPPRPs are also used as key sources of information in the preparation of Maryland’s Land Preservation and Recreation Plan. Here is the link for more information, and to see the 2017 Local Land Preservation, Parks, and Recreation Plans.

Stewardship Staff Contacts