The Columbia City Council approved the 2013 Open Space Master Plan proposed by the Columbia Department of Parks and Recreation. The plan calls for the acquisition and development of 22 new neighborhood parks and 20 new or expanded trails in and around the Columbia area.
As the population of Columbia exploded in the last decade, growing 32.3 percent, the city also added 10 square miles. This led to more people living in developing areas on the outskirts of the city where parks are less prevalent. If the city can acquire potential park land before it gets developed, it will be cheaper and save taxpayers money, city officials say.