Meeting the challenges of urban park management: A Study of Two Sites: a thesis completed and submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Philosophy in Resource and Environmental Planning, Massey University, Palmerston North, New Zealand

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There are key environmental and management issues relevant to protected areas and national parks apparent world-wide such as: management of environmental quality, biodiversity conservation, management of visitor use and impacts, allocation of access, law enforcement and monitoring, facility design, park financial viability, and community development. Today, the trend has changed towards more specific and strategic management plans. Greater emphasis is put towards meeting targets and objectives and park managers are encouraged to have a direct hand in the preparation of management plans. Visitor impact is also creating problems in park management that was unforeseen in the past. The management of visitors may be viewed as an integral part of the operational network of service tasks, service standards, and service delivery systems of recreation sites. Comprehensive planning and on-going monitoring underpin much of the success in visitor management. Whether park management decides to use tools such as hardening, hedging, or flexing, controlling numbers and type of visitor, interpretation/information education, or even a combination of these, the vital ingredient is to have a framework for visitor management. Collaborative management is not a new approach and is the most recommended technique to achieve most management objectives within protected areas today. Collaborative management stands on the concept of "common good." Because it is a process, collaborative management requires on-going review and improvement. Its most important result is not a management plan but a management partnership that is capable of effectively responding to various needs and addressing boundless problems. In the Philippines where there is more uncertainty about protected areas management, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources has the primary responsibility for the establishment and management of protected areas. The Quezon Memorial National Park, classified as a strictly protected area and whose management objectives are categorized as a national park, is one example. Two urban parks that originally formed part of QMNP are the subjects of this study. This research compares and evaluates the management schemes of these parks based on: (a) park management, (b) visitor management, and (c) biodiversity conservation against the criteria set by international and local guidelines. It also makes recommendations on how to effect changes in the management of these urban parks to achieve environmental conservation goals.
Parks -- Management, Philippines