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Natural Areas

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Natural Areas Newsletter

Natural Areas Permits Terms and Conditions

Who needs a Commercial Use Permit?

  • Any individual, organization, or business that is charging a fee to bring people, animals, goods and/or services into a natural area,
  • Any organization, for-profit and non-profit, that receives compensation in the form of a fee or donation as a condition of compensation for the services provided during the activity within a natural area. Examples: guided fishing, hiking, rafting, boating, filming or photography, environmental education, wildlife/bird watching.

What are the Terms and Conditions?

  • Applicant must pay a non-refundable $50.00 processing fee with application.
  • Permit must be carried on permittee at all times during activity/event.
  • The Natural Areas Department requires 15 business days to review and process the commercial use policy (CUP) once all fees and completed application are submitted in full.
  • Permittee is required to abide by all natural area regulations. Violations will result in revocation of permit and natural areas violations may result in a citation.
  • CUP activities are not allowed in areas closed to the public.
  • CUPs are non-transferrable and do not give permit holders exclusive use privilege.
  • The NAD reserves the right to deny, to modify, revoke, or suspend a permit for any reason.
  • Commercial advertising, marketing, sale of goods and from customers is not allowed on natural areas.
  • Permittee is required to report on events and activities after they occur. (see reporting table)
  • Permittees are required to have Commercial Liability Insurance consistent with terms published by the City’s Purchasing Department.
  • Permits are issued per event/activity or up to 365 days for reoccurring events. Permit is valid only through the calendar year of the approved permit. 
  • The Natural Areas Department limits the number of CUP permits issued per year/per activity.
  • A damage deposit may be required.
  • Applicant cannot publish or advertise event held in a natural areas until the permit has been approved and issued.
  • NAD reserves the right to deny CUP applications based upon NAD’s knowledge of parking and site capacity demand for the given time periods requested in the permit.
  • Limited Use Permit visitation shall not exceed 25 total visitor days and Moderate Use shall not exceed 50 visitor days per calendar year, per organization, per permit.
  • Permittee is required to list specific dates, times and requested natural areas at the time application is submitted.

How do I apply?

  1. Read and accept Terms and Conditions.
  2. Determine your Permit Level and required fee using table below.
  3. Submit an online application (see link below).
  4. Submit the $50 application fee and associated fees with the permit (within application) by contacting the Natural Areas Department Administrative Assistant.
  5. Attach the proof of insurance and other documentation.
  6. Submit associated fee based on Permit Level.

What are the Fees and Reporting Procedures?

Permit Level Group Size Cost Prior Reporting
(due at time of application)
Post Reporting

Limited Use

1-15 People

Visitor days not to exceed 25 in calendar year.  Total group size includes guide or leader.  A visitor is one customer visiting one natural area property in one day.

$25.00 non-profit

Due at time of application

Prior reporting is required for ALL permit levels

Report within two weeks from end of event/activity.

Moderate Use

16-50 People

Visitor days not to exceed 50 in calendar year. A visitor is one customer visiting one natural area property in one day.

$250.00 profit
$125.00 non-profit

Quarterly reporting is required (March 30, June 30, Sept 30, December 31)

Quarterly reporting

High Use

200 people or more

Visitor days will be greater than 200 in calendar year. 

Additional fees based on participation or type of activity.  No separation of fees for non-profit

Quarterly reporting is required (March 30, June 30, Sept 30, December 31)

Quarterly reporting

Commercial Filming and Photography

Conditional – staff discretion.  Use fee based on number of days filming, size of film crew, amount and type of equipment present. Recovery fee is for administrative and personnel costs.

TBD based on use fee and cost recovery fee

Due at time of application.  Prior reporting is required for ALL  permit levels

Report within two weeks from end of event/activity

Continue to application process