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Mayor Hancock, City Officials and Community Partners Celebrate Phase I and II of Re-Imagine Play at Paco Sanchez Park

Phase II is one of the first 2017 Bond projects overwhelmingly approved by voters last November, delivering improvements to Denver’s Parks & Recreation System

DENVER – Mayor Michael B. Hancock, Executive Director of Denver Parks and Recreation (DPR) Happy Haynes, Councilman Paul López (Dist. 3), city officials and community members celebrated the opening of Phase I of Re-Imagine Play at Paco Sanchez Park, and the groundbreaking of Phase II – a community-supported 2017 GO Bond project.

The brand and logo for the 2017 GO bond projects approved by voters last November was also unveiled – Elevate Denver.

Re-Imagine Play is an innovative approach to playground design that creates a multi-generational activity environment, giving all park users the opportunity to remain active through play. The Re-Imagine Play design embraces the natural topography of the park, and combines place-making and creative play elements to create a dynamic public space in an area of the city that lacks green space and other amenities. With close proximity to public transit, trails and the library, the completion of the park improvements build on recent investments in the neighborhood.

“These improvements here at Paco Sanchez Park will play a transformative role in how our kids and families in these neighborhoods connect with the outdoors and recreational activities here in Denver,” Mayor Hancock said. “As one of the first Elevate Denver bond projects to get underway, Phase II will provide even more of these experience to residents here on the westside. When it’s complete, you won’t find another park in Denver or in the country that will compare to Paco Sanchez Park!”

Located just west of Federal Boulevard and south of Colfax Avenue, the 30-acre park is named in honor of Colorado State Legislator, television personality and Spanish radio station owner, Francisco "Paco" Sanchez. Re-Imagine Play incorporates a broadcasting theme based on the legacy of Paco Sanchez with a vibrant color palette to reflect the spirit of the neighborhood. 

The communities surrounding Paco Sanchez Park are historically underserved in access to parkland and recreation amenities, with some of the lowest household incomes and highest obesity rates in the city. The need for meaningful access to recreation coupled with overwhelming community support made Paco Sanchez Park the ideal location for this project.

“This state-of-the art project goes beyond just play,” said Happy Haynes, Executive Director of Denver Parks and Recreation. “Re-Imagine Play focuses on multi-generational activities and programming, with a goal of inspiring children and families to engage in physical health through active fun for a lifetime.”

Designed by Dig Studio and constructed by PCL Construction Services, Phase I of the project includes the Play Plateau area and portions of the Play Loop. This area features large custom climbing structures and play equipment that reflects Paco Sanchez’s musical background. The focal point is the Mic Tower, a large climbing structure that resembles a vintage microphone and stands nearly 30’ tall. 

The intent of the park’s design is to encourage community gatherings of all kinds, with the opportunity to host festivals, live music performances, food trucks and more. Phase II of Re-Imagine Play will include a plaza and activity kiosk that will serve as a mini recreation center, providing the opportunity to participate in more activities, along with more opportunities to partner with non-profit and civic organizations to provide community programming. The kiosk and community plaza will be the focal point of not just the park, but the entire community, providing a central meeting and event space for neighbors to come together and celebrate the diverse cultures of West Denver. Construction of Phase II is estimated to be completed at the end of 2019.

Phase II is one of the first Elevate Denver Bond projects that voters overwhelmingly approved in November 2017. From more bike lanes and improved roads and bridges to park enhancements and major construction of cultural facilities and Denver Health, the list of initial Elevate Denver projects, amounting to $193 million, delivers on high priority projects that are ready to move forward.  

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Phase II Renderings

Community plaza

Performance stage & music bowl

Recreation area & activity kiosk