South Mountain Partnership Activates Network on Regional Project

BOILING SPRINGS, Pennsylvania – August 8, 2023 – The South Mountain Partnership (SMP) continues to make great strides in producing the first-ever State of the Region project that will measure the public and environmental health of the region and provide recommended actions to address regional environmental challenges that also effect public health.

The South Mountain Region consists of overall one million acres across portions of four counties- Adams, Cumberland, Franklin and York, – and the State of the Region looks at the entire region in an unusual undertaking that requires extensive collaboration among county planning agencies, tourism agencies, non-profits,  local officials and residents.

Over the past six months, a steering committee identified five subject areas to be evaluated as part of the initiative: nature, recreation, agriculture & food, history & culture and public health. Seventeen separate measurements (metrics) were then identified to evaluate how the region is doing across these subject areas. These include acres of farmland, miles of trails, number of historic resources, acres of public open space, number of extreme heat days, and many more. Each metric will be evaluated and presented in a Report Card to inform where our resources are healthy and protected and where improvement may be needed.

The SMP State of the Region will provide information and recommendations to make informed decisions about policy and planning like land use and the preservation of historic and cultural resources. For residents, it will provide insights and recommendations about how they can help protect or improve their asset-rich communities.

“This is a game-changer,” said Katie Hess, Director of the South Mountain Partnership, “to have this level of information available to anyone will help inform future decisions about land development, recreation opportunities and conservation efforts. It is unprecedented. We look forward to collaborating with our partners and the community at large to protect and improve this unique region we call home.”

She went on to say the Report Card portion of the project will wrap up in September and will be released in paper copies and online to encourage participation and understanding of the project and results. Those interested in learning more are encouraged to register at for the 13th Annual “Power of the Partnership” Celebration on September 29th where the Report Card will be revealed for the first time.