Restore America's Parks

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Pew’s work to restore America’s parks seeks to raise awareness about the deferred maintenance backlog facing the National Park Service (NPS) and implement long-term solutions to address the challenge.

The initiative collaborates with national partner groups, as well as state and local organizations, to effect change with Congress, the administration, and the NPS. Pew believes policymakers should:

  • Ensure that infrastructure initiatives include provisions to address park maintenance.
  • Provide dedicated annual federal funding for national park repairs.
  • Enact innovative policy reforms to ensure that deferred maintenance does not escalate.
  • Provide more highway funding for NPS maintenance needs.
  • Create more opportunities for public-private collaboration and donations to help restore park infrastructure. 

Our Work

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  • A New Job Can Start With Park Repairs

    In 2016, The Mission Continues, the National Park Foundation, and Boeing joined together to help returning veterans find work protecting, restoring, and rebuilding America’s natural and cultural heritage. The Veterans in Parks program holds events at national parks across the country where post-9/11 veterans can volunteer and potentially build careers. The events are held at both urban and... Read More

  • Railroad Magnates, Philanthropists Helped Launch Our National Parks

    Since the National Park System’s inception, the private sector has helped to build, expand, and protect our nation’s most cherished places. Here’s a look back at some of the public-private partnerships that helped the national parks get their start. Read More

  • Mesa Verde National Park

    Visitors to Mesa Verde National Park can walk among the ruins of cliff dwellings that tell the story of the Pueblo people who lived in this arid landscape from about 600 to 1300. Designated as a national monument by President Theodore Roosevelt in 1906, the 52,485-acre park and World Heritage site boasts about 5,000 archaeological sites. Read More

Case Studies

Repairs needed at our nation’s treasures

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Trust Magazine: Why America's National Parks Need Help

Starved of funding, our national parks have fallen into grave disrepair over the past few decades, with a maintenance backlog that now exceeds $12 billion. The dawning of the National Park Service’s second century presents us with an urgent challenge: to rejuvenate America’s “best idea.”

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Media Contact

Monique O'Grady

Officer, Communications

202.540.6336