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Nature in the City

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Dept Head: John Stokes

 Natural Area eNews

Nature Connection at New Park

Nature Connection at New Park

En Español

Project Background
Nature in the City works with neighborhoods across the community to help connect people and wildlife to nearby nature. With the City’s redesign of the park at Vine Drive and Lemay Avenue, an opportunity popped up for Nature in the City to explore ways to create a neighborhood nature connection in the new park (area shown in orange below).

Speak Up and Play | June 28 Event

On June 28, Nature in the City hosted a Speak Up and Play! event at Legacy Church to find out:

  • if there was community interest in a nature connection, and
  • what kinds of features neighbors might be interested in to connect to nature.

Postcard invitations were sent to nearby neighborhoods and businesses, announcements were made on neighborhood Nextdoor websites, and flyers were circulated to get the word out about the event. About 45 community members stopped by throughout the evening to enjoy tacos, play, and share their thoughts.

Learn more in the Nature in the City presentation from the June 28 event here.

When asked what features they would like to include, neighbors shared the following ideas:

Thanks for Speaking Up Online!

We received some very insightful feedback and requests to:

  • consider a community garden,
  • keep landscaping and artistic elements natural and simple, and
  • prioritize safety within the park (e.g. no log tunnels to hide in).

We also shared ideas that are beyond the scope of our program with our colleagues in Park Planning (e.g.: requests for basketball courts, a soccer field, a community swimming pool, a dog park, and a playground).

Since Nature in the City funding must be used to create healthy habitat for people and wildlife, staff will work to integrate the following community-requested features into the project:

  • Educational/ interpretive signage. Potential topics include: information about designing gardens using native, low-water use plants; pollinators; and local hydrology.
  • Native plants (e.g. perennials featured in pollinator gardens; fruit-bearing plants; low water use grass).
  • Trees!
  • Seating and gathering spaces (both shady and sunny).
  • Natural sculptures or structures that provide habitat and artistic interest
  • A community garden (*To be considered as a potential future addition as community sponsorship and management are assessed).


To keep pace with Park Planning’s work on the park, Nature in the City will advance designs for phase one (see area in orange below) by November 1, 2018, while remaining open to community feedback throughout the process. The project’s budget and the types of features Nature in the City can include will inform the final design. The team anticipates that infrastructure will be installed in the spring of 2019, and planting, signage, and seating will be designed and installed in the fall of 2019.


What's Next?

Check back here for future project updates, or sign up for Natural Areas Enews, a monthly electronic newsletter which includes Nature in the City updates.

Learn more about the Nature in the City program and explore completed community projects here.

Stephanie Kopplin (Natural Areas) is available to respond to questions or comments about Nature in the City and the proposed nature connection at 970.416. 4295 or email c2tvcHBsaW5AZmNnb3YuY29t.

If you have questions about the new park at Vine Drive and Lemay Avenue, please contact Craig Kisling (Park Planning) at 970.221.6367, or email Y2tpc2xpbmdAZmNnb3YuY29t.

Contact Us

Justin Scharton, Program Manager
Senior Environmental Planner
Natural Areas Department

Stephanie Kopplin
Environmental Planner
Natural Areas Department