Local and Regional Land Conservation Organizations: An Emerging Actor in Outdoor Recreation Provision


  • Pamela E. Foti
  • Harvey M. Jacobs


Private sector, outdoorrecreation provision, land trusts, future providers.


The provision of outdoor recreation has been accomplished through the efforts of both the public and private sectors. However, this provision has historically been heavily dominated by the public sector and, in many cases, the private sector role has been slight. In particular, the role of the private nonprofit sector has been almost completely discounted. This paper reports on a study which investigated one segment of the private nonprofit sector as an active provider of outdoor recreation: local and regional land conservation organizations (LRLCOs). Specifically, the paper describes the current role and explores the future potential of LRLCOs in outdoor recreation provision in the Great Lakes Region.The study found that, while LRLCOs are currently providing few outdoor recreation opportunities, their role cannot be completely ignored due to the quality of outdoor recreation provision and the ability of the organizations to meet specific activity goals. In addition, the study found that the future growth potential of LRLCOs may enhance the role of the organizations in outdoor recreation provision. The study determined that LRLCOs are especially suited to outdoorrecreationprovisionin two primary areas: environmental education centers and open space/trail corridors.





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