DCR Watershed Plans

View the plans used to protect the drinking water supply for 3.1 million people in the greater Boston area.

DCR is continuously planning to maintain the superior water quality in the Quabbin Reservoir, Ware River, and Wachusett Reservoir watersheds.  DCR is also responsible for the emergency water supply from the Sudbury and Foss Reservoirs.

There are three critical components to the planning process for each watershed in the DCR/MWRA Water Supply System:

  1. Public Access Plan -  describes the management policies that allow people to recreate on DWSP lands while still protecting water quality.
  2. Land Management Plan - a thorough description of the watershed’s physical features, the natural resources on DWSP property, and the variety of techniques used by the agency to enhance water quality, including land protection and forest and wildlife management.
  3. Watershed Protection Plan - takes information from the Public Access Plan and Land Management Plan and integrates water monitoring findings and other studies to create an action plan that is the basis for an annual Work Plan and budget.

There are also other plans and reports that aid in developing each of these plans.

DCR Watershed Management Planning Fact Sheet

Table of Contents

Annual Work Plan

Watershed Protection Plan

Public Access Management Plans

Quabbin Reservoir Watershed System Public Access Management Plan Update (2018)

Ware River Watershed Public Access Management Plan Update (2010)
Fall 2018: Update to Ware River Watershed Public Access Management Plan is now in process.

Wachusett Reservoir Watershed Public Access Plan Update (2011)
Fall 2022: Update to Wachusett Reservoir Watershed Public Access Management Plan is now in process.

Sudbury and Foss Reservoirs Public Access Plan 2022 Update

Land Management Plans

2017 Land Management Plan
A comprehensive plan that covers the Quabbin Reservoir, Ware River, Wachusett Reservoir, and Sudbury Reservoir watersheds.

Previous Land Management Plans
The 2017 Land Management Plan references previous editions of each respective watershed's Land Management Plans:

Invasive Species

Other Plans

Plan Update in Process - Ware River Access Plan

Additional Resources

Plan Update in Process - Wachusett Reservoir Access Plan

Fall 2022: Update to Wachusett Reservoir Watershed Public Access Management Plan is now in process.

October 25, 2022 - Public Meeting (Virtual)Initial presentation of issues by DCR and opportunity for public questions and feedback.  After the meeting, the presentation will be available for viewing at https://www.mass.gov/dcr/past-public-meetings. and selecting "Past Meetings."

The presentation is also available here:
Wachusett Reservoir Watershed 2023 Access Plan Listening Session Presentation 10/25/22Click here for the video of the 10/25/22 meeting.


DCR encourages the public to share additional feedback, with a deadline for receipt of comments by DCR of November 25th, 2022. Click here to submit written comments starting 10/26/22.

October 26, 2022 - November 30, 2022: Wachusett Reservoir Watershed Public Access Survey. Five minute on-line survey to help the Division of Water Supply Protection evaluate and improve its public access policies. Click here to take the survey.



Field Headquarters (508) 792-7806
Watershed Rangers (978) 365-3800


Field Headquarters
180 Beaman St.
West Boylston, MA 01505


100 Winsor Dam Rd.
Belchertown , MA 01007


Oakham Field Office Ware River Watershed
Oakham, MA 01068


Main Office (617) 626-1250

Open M-F 9am-5pm


Main Office
251 Causeway Street
9th Floor
Boston, MA 02114

Help Us Improve Mass.gov with your feedback