Checking In with Landscapes3 – First Quarter Success Story Highlights

You might have heard the term “Landscapes3” before, and you might even know that it’s Chester County’s comprehensive plan – but did you know that Landscapes3 is what helps guide the future for all of Chester County?

Implementing Landscapes3 requires coordinated efforts among the county’s municipalities, government, landowners, stakeholders, and residents. This includes everything from planning and design, to programs and services, as well as the ability to adapt in an ever-changing world. While we recently highlighted the county’s 2020 Success Stories in regards to the six goals found in Landscapes3, efforts have continued throughout the first quarter of 2021 as well!

With extensive growth in the county’s suburban centers and more expected to come, the Chester County Planning Commission released the Suburban Center Landscapes Design Guide in January of 2021 in order to provide planning and design guidance for new development within the county’s suburban center landscapes. The guide – which helps to foster development that’s compatible with community and historic character, protect residential neighborhoods from adverse impacts, encourage walkability and alternative modes of transportation, improve the environment, and guide appropriate development – supports both the “Live” and “Prosper” goals in Landscapes3. See the guide.

Another recent accomplishment, which supports the “Connect” goal in Landscapes3, is the completion of the Bill Mason Bridge in Downingtown. After years of planning, the former 93-year-old Chestnut Street Bridge reopened to the public in April of 2021. The project took more than two years to complete, and involved efforts from various construction, infrastructure, and transportation experts. “The original bridge opened in 1927, giving us 92 years of service, and we expect at least that much from the new bridge,” noted Downingtown Mayor, Phil Dague, in the Daily Local News. See the article.

Chester County also celebrated Earth Day this past April, with events occurring throughout the county to contribute to the national Earth Day theme of “Restore our Earth.” Efforts included Chester County Parks + Preservations’ planting of 100 milkweeds at Exton Park to help restore the county’s monarch butterfly population, as well as various volunteering opportunities and local clean up events. These initiatives help implement the “Preserve” and “Protect” goals in Landscapes3. See the video.

Additionally, in honor of “Celebrate Trails Day” (April 24), the Planning Commission prepared a list of “Top 5 Best Kept Secret Trails in Chester County,” which can be found here.

As an ongoing effort to preserve Chester County’s history and heritage through the “Appreciate” goal in Landscapes3, planning for the 2021 Town Tours and Village Walks program is currently underway! This year’s program will kick-off on Thursday, June 17, with a hybrid “Live at Five” celebration and Juneteenth Commemoration at the Chester County History Center, followed by optional walking tours. See the program and learn more.

Stay tuned for more information on the county’s 2021 Success Stories to come! To see past Success Stories and learn more about the implementation of Landscapes3, visit