Colorado Parks and Wildlife seeks input as they look to open future state parks
Credit: Colorado Parks and Wildlife
There are 41 state parks across Colorado offering access to some of the state’s most magnificent and diverse outdoor natural features, from mountain lakes to world class rock climbing, hiking and camping. Colorado’s state parks are drawing more visitors every year. On sunny weekends, state parks can have long lines waiting at the entrance gates. Growing demand for these outstanding outdoor places is one reason why Colorado Parks and Wildlife (CPW) is exploring opportunities to open new state parks.
State parks offer important places for outdoor recreation while benefiting local economies, public health, and quality of life. In 2018, the Colorado General Assembly passed the Future Generations Act, calling on CPW to plan for development of new state parks.
“As CPW considers possible new properties, we want to hear from the public about what characteristics and qualities they would like to experience at future state parks,” said Dan Prenzlow, director of Colorado Parks and Wildlife. “Our vision is that Colorado’s state parks connect people to natural wonders. Every state park should offer a unique place to experience Colorado and live life outside.”
The draft criteria, listed below, offer broad characteristics to evaluate properties in order to ensure they achieve this vision.
• Outstanding nature-based recreation • Natural resource value and conservation • Meets Colorado’s needs • Relevance and community value • Financial sustainability
For a more detailed description of each of these proposed criteria and an opportunity to provide comments, go to CPW’s website at: cpw.state.co.us/futurestateparks. The public comment period is open until Thursday, August 15, 2019. Governor Polis’ support for increasing access for all people is helping to drive conversations around the state of what and where future parks could be.
Please do not miss this chance to help identify future places that will be conserved and available for public enjoyment. Following public review, CPW will consider comments, revise criteria and present a final version to the Parks and Wildlife Commission and public in September 2019.