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City of Colorado Springs / Parks, Recreation & Cultural Services / News

Ute Valley Park expands by 110 acres
Monday, February 09, 2015


Colorado Springs, CO- The City of Colorado Springs TOPS Program, The Trust for Public Land (TPL), Great Outdoors Colorado (GOCO), Palmer Land Trust (PLT) and Friends of Ute Valley Park, have collaboratively conserved an additional 110 acres to be added to the Ute Valley Gateway Open Space. This will create a 203-acre open space on the border of the 300-plus acre Ute Valley Park in northwestern Colorado Springs.

  • In August 2013, TPL purchased the property outright from Hewlett Packard after a successful $7.4 million campaign led in partnership with Friends of Ute Valley Park
  • Energized by a challenge grant from Lyda Hill, the Friends of Ute Valley Park reached out to the Colorado Springs community who responded generously to preserve this natural resource treasure
  • Trails, Open Space and Parks (TOPS) funds include $2.8 million
  • GOCO open space grant of just over $1 million

TOPS funds are generated by a voter approved, city-wide 1/10th cent sales tax, for the sole benefit of parks, trails and open space projects.  Since initiated by the voters in 1997, the TOPS Program has preserved over 4,900 acres of open space for natural resource conservation and outdoor recreation throughout the Colorado Springs area.

This land is now conserved as open space forever with a conservation easement held by Palmer Land Trust. The parcel was identified in the 1997 Colorado Springs Open Space Plan as a candidate for conservation, making the realization of this goal almost 20 years later a wonderful success for City of Colorado Springs residents.

PLT will hold the conservation easement, designating it as the organization responsible for the property's perpetual protection. PLT provides ongoing stewardship oversight to its protected landscapes, ensuring that the conservation values are upheld in perpetuity. For the Ute Valley Gateway Open Space, the conservation easement guarantees that this property remains accessible open space forever.

A previous $623,000 GOCO grant also helped fund the previous acquisition and conservation of the initial 93 acres of open space. Completing the entire open space will allow the city to complete the Ute Valley Trail, an important east-west recreation corridor in the city.

About GOCO

GOCO invests a portion of Colorado Lottery proceeds to help preserve and enhance the state's parks, trails, wildlife, rivers and open spaces. For more information, visit www.goco.org.

About Palmer Land Trust

Palmer Land Trust has been protecting the places you treasure since 1977. To learn more, please visit www.palmerlandtrust.org.

About The Trust for Public Land

The Trust for Public Land creates parks and protects land for people, ensuring healthy, livable communities for future generations. To learn more about The Trust for Public Land and share why nature matters to you, visit www.tpl.org.

About The Friends of Ute Valley Park

Friends of Ute Valley Park is an officially recognized “Friends” organization by the City of Colorado Springs Parks and Recreation Department with a mission to maintain, preserve, and provide education for Ute Valley Park. To learn more, visit http://friendsofutevalleypark.com/