Final Master Plan now available

Master Plan FAQs

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 Does the completion of this Master Plan mean that Hawn’s Peninsula won’t be developed?

The Hawn’s Bridge area has been divided into four land parcels classified as such: Parcel 4013 - environmentally sensitive, Parcel 5305 - vegetative management, Parcel 5205 - wildlife management and Parcel 5206 - wildlife management.   Therefore, this area is not suitable for activities associated with High Density Recreation such as RV camping, swim beaches, lodges, cabins, marinas, etc.  Opportunities will continue for the inclusion of passive forms of recreation such as hunting, wildlife viewing, use of the Terrace Mountain Trail, etc.  Any such recreation opportunities will not compromise or impede the primary management objective for the land classification assigned.

 How do I comment on the final Plan?

If you have any comments regarding the completed Master Plan you may email them to USACE using the following address, or you may provide feedback directly on the project website which is as follows

 How many comments were collected from the 2nd phase of public input in reviewing the draft plan? 

During the second phase of public comment, held from October 23 through December 7, 2019 over 150 comments were received. Nearly all comments received during this public comment period were related to either the finalization of the plan with no changes or the incorporation of recreation activities to Parcel 5303, which is part of the Hawn’s Bridge area. 

 If I have any questions regarding the final Plan, who should I contact?

If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out through the project mailbox at You may also contact the Raystown Lake Project Office at 814-658-3405.

 What happens now that the Plan is final?

Now that the revised plan has been completed, Baltimore District and Raystown Lake staff will update the Operational Management Plan for Raystown Lake to reflect changes made from the 1994 Master Plan to the 2021 Master Plan and work to implement actionable items as staffing and financial resources are available.

 What was done with the comments from the 2nd comment period?

All comments received during this comment period have been included in Appendix B of the Master Plan. As during the initial comment period, all comments were analyzed independently as well as grouped for trend discovery.

 When or how will the Future Recreation Areas be developed?

As federal recreation funding is limited, these sites could be potentially leased to other agencies or local governments, or they could be advertised as potential commercial sites following USACE Real Estate regulations.  Until there is an opportunity to develop these areas, they will be managed for multiple resources including low density recreation, wildlife and vegetative management.  Proposed Future Recreation Areas identified in this plan will require separate NEPA review and evaluation.

 Where can I get a summary of changes that were made to the draft plan that was presented for review?

Chapter 8, Summary of Recommendations, includes Table 8.7 which provides a chapter by chapter summary of the significant changes made to the draft Plan presented in October 2019.

 Where can I review a copy of the final Master Plan?

The final plan, including all appendices, is available online at A printed version is also available at the Raystown Lake Visitors Center, 6145 Seven Points Road, Hesston, PA 16647 during open hours.

 Will there be any changes to the operation of the Raystown Dam or the hydropower facility as a result of this Plan?

               No. Master Plans do not change the technical operations of a lake as related to its flood risk management or hydropower mission.

 Will there be any more boat spaces added to parking facilities or at the marinas?

The results of the Boating Capacity Study conducted for Raystown Lake concluded that the boating carrying capacity at Raystown Lake has been reached and exceeded.  The observed peak density at Raystown Lake reached 5.7 acres per boat, which is well beyond recommended standards established for the Project at 10-20 acres per boat.  No additional motorized boat parking spaces will be added.

Raystown Master Plan Revision Overview

Master Plan overview

A master plan is a strategic land use management document that guides the comprehensive management and development of a project’s recreational, natural and cultural resources. The Master Plan includes land use classifications that govern the way land is managed and used to provide good stewardship and outdoor recreation to meet the needs created by the lake itself. Every U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) lake has a master plan that serves as a framework for consistent, responsible decision-making for 15-25 years.

Master plans determine how areas of the lake should and can be used for the next 15- 25 years based off of environmental studies, boating studies, operational requirements and public opinion. These studies and findings ensure that the Master Plan will properly guide decision-making at the lake. The primary goals of the Raystown Lake Master Plan revision are to prescribe an overall land use management plan, resource objectives, and associated design and management concepts for the Raystown Lake Project. The current Master Plan for Raystown Lake dates back to 1994.

It's important to note that a master plan does not plan or approve changes or improvements to the flood risk management and hydropower functions of the lake. Raystown Lake was built for these missions, so a master plan will not allow for any adjustments to those functions.

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 Find out more...

Purpose for revising the Master Plan

While legislation contained in the 2016 Water Infrastructure Improvement for the Nation Act (WIIN), Section 1309, requires the Master Plan for Raystown Lake be updated, the revision is part of a larger, Corps-wide effort to bring master plans up to date across the country. Master plans are designed to provide a framework for decision-making for 15-25 years.  In 25 years a lot can change at a project. Technology improves, recreational needs may change and environmental factors may vary. The last time Raystown Lake’s Master Plan was revised was 1994, which is why we need to go over the plan again to see how the public needs/wants may have changed and how biologically the lake might have changed or remained the same.  

Contents of the Master Plan

The new Master Plan will be shorter and more comprehensive than the 1994 plan. The sections of the Master Plan will include the following chapters:

  1. Introduction: Reviews the purpose and overview of the project and the Master Plan.
  2. Project Setting and Factors Influencing Management and Development: Details natural and cultural resources, hydrology of the lake, visual qualities, economic factors, topography, etc.
  3. Resource Objectives: Details the goals and resource objectives of the lake.
  4. Land and Water Use Classifications: Details land and water allocations and classifications. 
  5. Resource Plan: Outlines land and water classification areas such as operations areas, environmentally sensitive areas, high-density recreation areas, etc.
  6. Special Topics: Covers various topics such as land inventory, Boating Carrying Capacity Study, partnerships, etc.
  7. Agency and Public Coordination: Details how public comments were evaluated and collected.
  8. Summary of Recommendations: Details a summary of the findings and proposed actions of the Master Plan. 
  9. Bibliography: Details any additional sources cited in the Master Plan.
  10. Appendices: Includes the Environmental Assessment, park maps, Boating Carrying Capacity Study, land inventory, etc.


Raystown Lake Master Plan Resources


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To submit feedback or questions, please email

Raystown Lake

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
Raystown Lake
6145 Seven Points Road
Hesston, PA 16647


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