What is the population of Parkersburg WV?
As of the year 2000, there were 33,099 residents within Parkersburg (US Census Bureau, Census 2000 Table DP-1. Profile of General Demographic Characteristics: 2000, Geographic Area: Parkersburg city, West Virginia. 2000)
What is the population at poverty level?
The best indicator, found thus far, of how many Parkersburg residents live at poverty level is the estimated number of renters who are unable to afford Fair Market Rent. This varies from 34% for a one bedroom apartment to 49% for a three bedroom apartment. This translates into 4276 - 6163 people respectively of the renting population and represents from 13% - 19% of the total population (US Census Bureau, Census 2000 Table DP-1. Profile of General Demographic Characteristics: 2000, Geographic Area: Parkersburg city, West Virginia. 2000)(National Low Income Housing Coalition/LIHIS. Out of Reach, September, 2000. www.nlihc.org)
What is the area of Parkersburg?
Parkersburg is 11 square miles in area (Parkersburg/Wood County Area Development Corporation, A Special Presentation On Parkersburg/Wood County West Virginia. pg. I:1, 1998.)
What is the total area of existing Parks in Parkersburg?
There are 7 to 9 separate parklands totaling 130 to 146+ acres. There are 2 city-wide community parks, 2 neighborhood parks and 5 special recreation facilities:

(1)City Park is Parkersburg's most widely used recreational area comprising between 46 to 55 acres. Facilities include; large lake with paddle boats and fishing, olympic size swimming pool, surfaced tennis courts, lighted baseball field, playground, horseshoe pit, sand volleyball, complete picnic accommodations, museum, winterized pavilion, green space/open play area, basketball hoops, miniature golf, gymnasium, concessions, restrooms, trails and walking paths, sitting and viewing areas and a band shell. It is considered a city-wide community park. (R.J. Ankhom Associates, City-Wide Parks Master Plan, Parkersburg, WV, pg. 4-5, 1996)(Chamber of Commerce of the Mid-Ohio Valley, Fact Forms: General Information Concerning the Parkersburg/Wood County Area.).

(2)Southwood Park, 27.5 acres, offers playground equipment, a picnic area and shelters, lighted softball diamond, bleachers, olympic sized swimming pool, green space/open play areas, basketball hoops, playground, tennis courts, concessions, restrooms, trails and walking path, fishing, sitting and viewing areas, and a giant water slide. It is considered a city-wide community park.

(3)Quincy Hill Park, 4 acres, offers a nice view of Parkersburg, the Ohio River and Blennerhassett Island, green space/open play area, basketball hoops, picnic area and shelters, restrooms, as well as playground equipment and limited parking. It is considered a neighborhood park.(The Chamber of Commerce of the Mid-Ohio Valley. The Mid-Ohio Valley - Chamber of Commerce; When You're Here, You're Home. pg. 28, Progress Publications, Parkersburg, WV. 2000) (R.J. Ankhom Associates, City-Wide Parks Master Plan, Parkersburg, WV, pg. 4-5, 1996)

(4)Blizzard Park, is 5.0 acres, and offers only playground equipment. The five acres is misleading because it includes ground occupied by a fire station, branch library and steep terrain. It is considered a neighborhood park (R.J. Ankhom Associates, City-Wide Parks Master Plan, Parkersburg, WV, pg. 4-7, 1996).

(5)Point Park, 2.5 acres, and (6) Point Plaza, 0.5 acres, [may be considered one park area?] are outside the floodwall and offer boarding to Blennerhassett Island Historical State Park and riverside walking as well as a picnic area, fishing, boating, sitting and viewing areas. They are considered special recreational facilities (The Chamber of Commerce of the Mid-Ohio Valley. The Mid-Ohio Valley - When You're Here, You're Home. pg. 28, Progress Publications, Parkersburg, WV. 2000)(R.J. Ankhom Associates, City-Wide Parks Master Plan, Parkersburg, WV, pg. 4-5, 1996)

(7)Corning Park, 6 acres, offers a small picnic area with shelter, green space/open play area, a playground, fishing, sitting and viewing areas restrooms and boat ramp on Worthington Creek for access to Little Kanawha and Ohio Rivers. It is considered a special recreational facility (The Chamber of Commerce of the Mid-Ohio Valley. The Mid-Ohio Valley - When You're Here, You're Home. pg. 28, Progress Publications, Parkersburg, WV. 2000)(R.J. Ankhom Associates, City-Wide Parks Master Plan, Parkersburg, WV, pg. 4-5, 1996)

(8)Johnson T. Janes Park is 36 acres in size and offers viewing of undeveloped wetlands. It is considered a special recreational facility (The Chamber of Commerce of the Mid-Ohio Valley. The Mid-Ohio Valley - When You're Here, You're Home. pg. 28, Progress Publications, Parkersburg, WV. 2000) (R.J. Ankhom Associates, City-Wide Parks Master Plan, Parkersburg, WV, pg. 4-5, 1996)

(9)Bicentennial Park, 0.5 acres in size, offers historic reference. It is considered a special recreational facility (R.J. Ankhom Associates, City-Wide Parks Master Plan, Parkersburg, WV, pg. 4-5, 1996).

City operated parks constitute only 1.84% of the total area (if use 130 acres of available park facilities) or 2.07% of the total area of Parkersburg's total area (if use 146 acres of available park facilities figures). (R.J. Ankhom Associates, City-Wide Parks Master Plan, Parkersburg, WV, pg. 4, 1996) (Parkersburg/Wood County Area Development Corporation, A Special Presentation On Parkersburg/Wood County West Virginia. pg. XII:2, 1998.) (Chamber of Commerce of the Mid-Ohio Valley, Fact Forms: General Information Concerning the Parkersburg/Wood County Area.) (R.J. Ankhom Associates, City-Wide Parks Master Plan, Parkersburg, WV, pg. 4-5, 1996)
How many wetlands are there in the Parkersburg area?
There are over 75 wetlands within Parkersburg, as defined through mapping procedures developed by the US Fish and Wildlife Service(USFWS). Yet, little to no land has been set aside for preservation and recognition of these sensitive ecological communities. Rather, landholders have developed these areas into farms and businesses. Additionally, there have been few field examinations by USFWS personnel on wetlands within Parkersburg. That is until recently, November 2000, when planners from the City of Parkersburg collaborated with the USFWS to do some field investigations on the Johnson T. Janes Park. USFWS personnel have been busy with wetlands in the region though, through their wetlands inventory. Other data that credits agencies, other than USFWS, for defining, determining, listing and providing other forms of recognition for wetlands within the Parkersburg area have not been found. (Blaine, Brad. The Wetlands of Johnson T. Janes Park. 2001) (Office of Biological Services for the National Wetlands Inventory. National Wetlands Inventory Map)
How many educational facilities are there in Parkersburg?
Wood County Board of Education operates 29 facilities. These include 8 secondary schools, 1 vo-tech center and 20 elementary schools. An overall total enrollment of 15,000 students and an average expenditure of $5,805/pupil was noted in 1997. There are 3 high schools in the Parkersburg area; Parkersburg High School (1,529 students in 1996-97). Williamstown High School (653 students in 1996-97) and Parkersburg South High School (1,232 students in 1996-97). There are 6 junior high schools with a total enrollment of 3,397 and 20 elementary schools with 8,125 students. Parkersburg has one Roman Catholic Parochial Elementary School, enrollment 220, as well as a Catholic High School. As for higher education, WVU-P enrolls nearly 4,000 students in credit classes and serves an additional 3,000 - 4,000 persons annually in non-credit classes, seminars, and workshops. Ohio Valley College, located within Parkersburg had 459 students attending in the 1997-1998 school year. Mountain State College, within Parkersburg, has had over 50,000 attendants since its establishment in 1888. (Chamber of Commerce of the Mid-Ohio Valley, Fact Forms: General Information Concerning the Parkersburg/Wood County Area) (Parkersburg/Wood County Area Development Corporation. A Special Presentation on Parkersburg/WoodCounty West Virginia. October 1998)
What is the urban sprawl rate (generally)?
Nationally, urban sprawl consumes more than 1 million acres per year of parks, farm and open space (Sierra Club 1999 Sprawl Report www.sierraclub.org/sprawl/report99)

In some areas, such as Maryland which mirrors the problems associated with sprawl throughout the nation, sprawl has been well noted. There will be as much land consumption in the next 25 years as the total amount of land consumed in the first 300 years. This will result in a loss of over 500,000 acres of forests and farmland. (McMahon, Edward T.. "Stopping Sprawl by Growing Smarter" Planning Commissioners Journal Spring 1997, Issue 26; 4).

Between 1970 and 1990, metro New York's population grew only 5 percent, but consumed 61 percent more land; metro Chicago's population grew by just 4 percent, but consumed 46 percent more land; and metro Cleveland's population declined by 11 percent but still consumed 33 percent (McMahon, Edward T.. "Stopping Sprawl by Growing Smarter" Planning Commissioners Journal Spring 1997, Issue 26; 4)

Urban sprawl is such a big problem that questions about it were posed to the Presidential Candidates, Texas Governor George Bush Jr. and Vice President Al Gore in the 2000 Presidential Campaign. (Planning Commissioners Journal. Sept. 7, 2000 www.plannersweb.com/candidates2000.html)
What is the amount of land being consumed by the new U.S. Route 50 expansion, Corridor D?
About 3 miles of the US Route 50, Corridor D, expansion will fall within the city limits and consume 478.942 acres. (phone # 420-4686, WVDOH District 3 Office or visit www.wvcorridord.com)
What are the trends for funding parks?
Parks and recreation studies have looked at the issues that most affected local government recreation and parks administrations. They found 5 such issues which were classified as an "extreme impacts". They included: #1) deteriorating park and recreation infrastructure, #3) declining park and recreation budgets relative to costs, #4) increasing competition for shrinking federal, state, and local tax resources. (Russell, Ruth V.. Public Park and Recreation Trends: A Status Report. Department of Recreation and Park Administration, Indiana University)
What needs will be addressed by the development of the Johnson T. Janes Park?
(Please see data within this document in addition to the information listed here.)

Johnson T. Janes Park will be the only facility within the City to provide a completely natural setting as a nature preserve.

Johnson T. Janes Park will be the only City-operated park within the northern 1/3 portion of the city. 

Johnson T. Janes park will be located in close proximity (1/2 mile, or 10 minutes walking time) to the population, as it is situated in a residential area. Furthermore, there is only one naturally occurring access barrier to the park (Worthington Creek), unlike many other areas in the city which have major roadways, bridge crossings, and ridge tops which act as barriers and impede visitation (R.J. Ankhom Associates, City-Wide Parks Master Plan, Parkersburg, WV, ppg. 9-21, 1996).

The standard most commonly accepted to assess whether or not there is enough land dedicated to parks is the ratio of 10 acres per 1,000 residents. Parkersburg has a need for 331 acres, yet currently only has a maximum of approximately 146 acres, thereby leaving a deficit of 185 acres (R.J. Ankhom Associates, City-Wide Parks Master Plan, Parkersburg, WV, ppg. 9-21, 1996).

Johnson T. Janes Park will provide 4 of the 10 most frequent outdoor activities that residents in this region demand. These include jogging/walking (#1), sightseeing (#3), picnicking (#7) and birdwatching (#9) (Repass Research. Survey of Outdoor Recreation Demand - West Virginia [for National Recreation and Park Association, WV 1993-1997 Statewide Comprehensive Outdoor Recreation Plan])

The development of the Johnson T. Janes Park will create service-learning opportunities within the community. The design, construction and maintenance of the park are areas in which those involved in service-learning may participate. 

The area constituting Johnson T. Janes Park is best used for a nature preserve and park. Though it is situated in an area where the soil is of moderate to high fertility, due to seasonal flooding, it is unsuitable for crops. (United States Department of Agriculture - Soil Conservation Service and West Virginia Agricultural Experiment Station. Soil Survey Wood and Wirt Counties West Virginia. US Government Printing Office, Washington D.C. 1970).

The majority of the acreage in Wood County has been cleared, though some stands of yellow poplar, sycamore and Virginia pine frequently grow in flooded areas like Johnson T. Janes Park. Thus, the park offers a capsule of trees that aren't found in abundance in other areas (United States Department of Agriculture - Soil Conservation Service and West Virginia Agricultural Experiment Station. Soil Survey Wood and Wirt Counties West Virginia. US Government Printing Office, Washington D.C. 1970).

Traditionally, there has been interest in managing similar areas for timber harvesting. However, soil scientists have found limitations (equipment limitations, erosion hazards, plant competitions, etc.) that are rated as 'severe' limitations which impede would-be timber operators. Therefore, the natural growth that occurs at Johnson T. Janes Park is left best as it is. (United States Department of Agriculture - Soil Conservation Service and West Virginia Agricultural Experiment Station. Soil Survey Wood and Wirt Counties West Virginia. US Government Printing Office, Washington D.C. 1970).

Studies have examined Johnson T. Janes Park for suitability as wildlife habitat and have found that it 'well suited' for wildlife (United States Department of Agriculture - Soil Conservation Service and West Virginia Agricultural Experiment Station. Soil Survey Wood and Wirt Counties West Virginia. US Government Printing Office, Washington D.C. 1970).

Parkersburg has grown 406.139 acres since 1994 with no addition of new parks and based on projections, it is expected that another 300 acres will be annexed into the city within 5 years. Yet there has been no increase in parkland.

Recent investigations by the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources Natural Heritage Program have found a group of cottonwood trees of uncommon size that would rival other cottonwood stands within West Virginia (Mancini, Jesse. "Park to have biological testing", Parkersburg Sentinel Newspaper, September 1, 2001)
What evidence is there that the Johnson T. Janes Park will be successful?
Addressing specified needs above

On Thursday, May 10, 2001 approximately 300 Wirt County students from grades 4,6, and 8 attended an annual wetlands field day. This annual event is a cooperative effort from many government agencies such as USDA, WV Conservation Service, Wirt County BOE, Wirt County Commission, Wirt County Development Authority, WV Division of Natural Resources. 

The City received support to purchase and install playground equipment for Southwood, Quincy and City parks from the Eagles, American Legion Post 15, United National Bank, Gatewood Products, McDonough Foundation, the Elks Club, the Deputy Sheriff's Association, Mary Hughes estate and a grant from the Sisters of Saint Joseph Charitable fund. 

The City started the "Adopt a Flowerbed" program and has been very successful in beautifying the City's parks with over 60 groups and individuals assisting with planting in Quincy, City, Corning and Southwood Parks. The City provides the flowerbeds mulch and assistance for individuals that need it. The groups and individuals provide the flowers.

A basketball court in Southwood Park, a restroom and basketball court in Quincy Park and a volleyball court in City Park were constructed using a Land and Water Conservation Grant and the City's matching funds.
What are the qualifications of those administering the project?
Steve Brodsky - City of Parkersburg Development Director, B.S. in Journalism from Ohio University, B.A. in Political Science from Ohio University, previous to his current position he served 4 years as the City's Federal Projects Administrator

Ron Stadler - City of Parkersburg Engineering Director, B.S. in Civil Engineering from West Virginia University. He has 32 years of engineering and public service experience. 

Ann Conageski - City of Parkersburg Federal Projects Administrator & AmeriCorps VISTA Supervisor, B.A. in Economics from Regis College in Massachusetts, M.A. in Economics from The University of Texas - Austin. She has worked for the US Census Bureau and has served with a variety of state, federal and local government agencies. 

Thomas Painter - Former City of Parkersburg Federal Projects Administrator & AmeriCorps VISTA Supervisor, B.S. in Political Science from Shepherd College, WV, M.P.A. in Public Administration from University of Oklahoma. He had 24 years of experience in his field prior to his departure. 

Robert Matthews - City of Parkersburg's AmeriCorps VISTA, an active undergraduate at Ohio University pursuing a degree in Environmental Geography. He had almost 5 years of government service before the end of his VISTA term.

Brad Blaine - City of Parkersburg's AmeriCorps VISTA/Ecological Developer, B.A. in biology with emphasis in ecology and environmental science from West Virginia University. He has worked on numerous ecological projects for academic, state and federal institutions and has over 9 years of government service experience.
What is the mission of your organization?
The City of Parkersburg was established by the Virginia Legislature in 1811 and chartered in 1820. It's mission has been to increase the quality of life of its citizens through the passage of legislation, by providing numerous assistance programs, as well as developing, improving, and maintaining civil infrastructure.
2001 The City of Parkersburg
One Government Square, P.O. Box 1627, Parkersburg, WV 26102