The Horseshoe Farm Park is a 146 -acre farm situated in an oxbow Neuse River. Identified as a Regionally Significant Natural Heritage Area, the location is a unique and peaceful place dominated by large fields and surrounded by wetlands populated with old hardwood trees.
The master plan for the park was established through cooperation of Raleigh’s Parks department and a group of committed neighborhood activists. The plan takes advantage of the natural beauty of the area, introducing amenities that minimally impact the site. When construction is complete (it should begin this Fall), visitors will be able to enjoy access to the river and wetlands, picnic and playground areas and connections to the Neuse River Greenway. The park will also serve as an example of sustainable design principles put into practice. Check out the city’s master plan drawing for an overview of the site. Raleigh’s website also includes links to the environmental stewardship recommendations adopted by the City Council and an excerpt of the City Council’s discussion of the park. Construction of this park is funded by the park bond passed in 2000.
If you visit Horseshoe Farm today, you’re only going to be able to (comfortably) experience a small portion of the site. You can explore the grounds of the farm house and the relocated smoke house. There are several picnic tables near the house that provide nice view of the fields. But, there’s not yet a well-established or marked trail through the wetlands and forest that surround the fields. The status of the park today is one of great potential. I look forward to visiting the completed park.