America's Heritage for Sale

View Full Report
(PDF, 1.6 MB, 32 pages)

or view case studies:
Big Thicket National Preserve (TX)
Congaree National Park (SC)
Gettysburg National Military Park (PA)

Golden Gate National Recreation Area (CA)
Harpers Ferry National Historical Park (VA, WV)
Mt. Rainier National Park (WA)
Obed Wild and Scenic River (TN)
Petrified Forest National Park (AZ)
Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore (MI)

Virgin Islands National Park (VI)



Where is America's hottest real estate market? It could be our national parks.

Published: April 2008

That's right. Luxury houses and commercial developments may be built right in the heart of many national parks. While Congress drew the boundaries of those parks, the White House and Congress have yet to provide the funds needed to purchase all of the land within those boundaries.

NPCA has published America's Heritage For Sale, the first comprehensive look in decades at the development threats to land within national park boundaries, and highlighted 10 national parks with For Sale signs now posted on land within their boundaries. At Gettysburg for instance, one out of every five acres inside the park’s boundary is privately owned--and vulnerable to development. This puts wildlife, natural and cultural treasures, the experiences of visitors, and the very future of our national parks at risk.

This crisis has a solution. The Land and Water Conservation Fund is a federal program that provides funding for federal agencies, including the Park Service, to purchase critical lands now on the market for conservation and public recreation.

NPCA encourages the Administration and Congress to provide at least $200 million for the Park Service to buy private land within park boundaries from willing sellers to address the $2 billion land acquisition backlog, and a significant investment in future years to ensure that the national parks are fully protected and preserved by their 2016 centennial--and without a patchwork of development inside their borders.

America's heritage can no longer be for sale.

See Also

From Our Blog
The Power of One: Saving a Piece of Zion -- NPCA's Park Advocate, October 31, 2012

NPCA Press Release
New Report: Critical Land Inside 55 National Parks Could Be Lost for Lack of Funding

NPCA Podcast

From Our Magazine
A Promise Unfulfilled -- Spring 2007

Fact Sheet
Land and Water Conservation Fund: Overview, Funding History, and Current Issues -- Congressional Research Service, July 10, 2006

Contact an NPCA Expert on this Issue


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