CPW invites the public to learn about the future of Colorado’s State Parks
GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. - With more people visiting and moving to the state each year, Colorado Parks and Wildlife has seen a significant increase in visitation to all 42 state parks, a trend expected to continue into the future. To provide the public with information about the challenges and discuss options for addressing them, CPW will hold several public meetings across the state. The first will take place at 6 p.m., Nov. 14, in the Escalante Room of the Two Rivers Convention Center, 159 Main Street in Grand Junction.
Colorado Parks and Wildlife relies on park entrance fees, camping fees, lottery and GOCO funds to support 42 state parks. Over 12 million people visit the parks each year, contributing $1 billion to Colorado’s outdoor recreation economy.
"Because our parks are an important part of the state's economy and we anticipate a significant increase in visitation in the years to come, we need to begin a discussion now," said Highline Lake State Park Manager Alan Martinez. "We have an excellent product to offer and we welcome more visitation, but with more people enjoying our parks comes additional strain to this resource. We invite the public to provide input and help us find effective solutions."
Among the needs CPW says will become necessary to meet demands include road improvements, infrastructure, additional facilities and possibly more staffing.
"When you consider the demands of a modern camper, including heating, cooling and electronics, it places a significant demand on our aging infrastructure systems," adds Martinez. "We've seen utility bills go up 70 percent in the last 10 years at some parks. We all need to be ready for a busy future at our state parks."
Visit CPW's website for more information about Funding the Future of Colorado State Parks.
Who: Colorado Parks and Wildlife
What: Public discussion about the challenges of increasing park visitation
When: 6 p.m., Nov. 14
Where: Escalante Room of the Two Rivers Convention Center, 159 Main Street in Grand Junction
CPW is an enterprise agency, relying primarily on license sales, state parks fees and registration fees to support its operations, including: 42 state parks and more than 350 wildlife areas covering approximately 900,000 acres, management of fishing and hunting, wildlife watching, camping, motorized and non-motorized trails, boating and outdoor education. CPW's work contributes approximately $6 billion in total economic impact annually throughout Colorado.