Mar 10, 2015
Mayor Michael B. Hancock today, joined by city officials and community members, broke ground on three new parks in Denver, adding 64 acres of park land for the city’s urban park system.
Located at the confluence of Westerly Creek and Sand Creek in Stapleton, the new acreage will again be enhanced over the next several years to include another 120 acres of parks and open space along the Sand Creek corridor north of I-70.
“Denver, we are making this city a better place for your family and mine” said Mayor Hancock. “Parks, trails and open spaces play a critical role in our city’s vitality. By providing more opportunity in our neighborhoods, like this new parkland, we are improving the quality of life here for all our people. From here we remain focused on protecting Denver’s parks and open spaces, rehabilitating vital resources, expanding playgrounds and recreational programs and seeking out opportunities to add new acreage to the urban park system.”
With today’s ceremony, construction will begin immediately and all three parks are expected to be finished in November. The three new parks are part of the long-term master plan for the Stapleton community. Although the parks have been planned for many years, the timing of their construction has been dependent on the growth and development of the Stapleton Community.
Construction work will include: Westerly Creek channel stabilization and improvements; more than 500 new tree plantings and more than 1600 new shrubs; a new bike/pedestrian bridge across Westerly Creek; more than 4,000 linear feet of new regional trail along Sand Creek; more than 9,000 linear feet of concrete and soft surface park trails; more than 40 acres of vegetation, including short grass prairie; and more than 40 acres of new irrigation systems for establishing and maintaining the new park areas.
“These 64 acres that we are starting today are just the beginning,” said Lauri Dannemiller, Executive Director of Denver Parks and Recreation. “Over the next five years we’ll add another 120 acres of parks and open space to our portfolio as development continues to grow along the Sand Creek corridor north of I-70. We’ll also be designating every available acre of these new parks and open spaces to ensure they are protected and available for generations to come.”
Today, Denver’s urban park system embraces nearly 6,000 acres of “traditional” parks, parkways and natural areas. The administration has worked over the past three years to ensure that more than 80 percent of those acres are designated and protected for generations to come. Additional land will be designated in 2015 in an effort to protect as many acres of this valuable resource as possible.
Denver Parks and Recreation (DPR) facilities are unrivaled in the Rocky Mountain West. The DPR system spans over a 146-year history, from the first park created in 1868 to nearly 20,000 acres of urban parks and mountain parkland today.