Clear Creek plan would get trail users closer to water

City’s Master Plan identifies sites along creek for updates, preservation

Posted 6/4/19

This month, city personnel will seek community input on Arvada’s Clear Creek Corridor Master Plan, which aims to enhance the environmental and recreational experiences for residents along the Clear …

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Clear Creek plan would get trail users closer to water

City’s Master Plan identifies sites along creek for updates, preservation

Posted

This month, city personnel will seek community input on Arvada’s Clear Creek Corridor Master Plan, which aims to enhance the environmental and recreational experiences for residents along the Clear Creek Corridor.

Since planning began in November 2018, the city has collaborated with the City of Denver, Hyland Hills Park and Recreation District and other partners to conduct a study and draft a plan.

“We all got together and walked the whole corridor,” said senior landscape architect Mike Lee. “We looked at some of these specific sites where we could do something more.”

Through the study, the planning team has identified three opportunity sites for environmental and recreational changes, Lee said.

The first is located at the trail network at 52nd Avenue and Marshall Street. The city would work with Denver to reroute the Clear Creek Trail so that walkers can get closer to the water.

“Right now, it goes through a neighborhood,” Lee said, “so we want to move it along the Clear Creek and do some stream crossings.”

Lee said grant money for this site could also go toward preserving the blue bedrock formation found along the creek in that area.

Lee and his team are also considering plans for their second opportunity site at Gold Strike Park, 5500 W. 56th Ave. The city would create a community lawn and nature walk, add more sculptures to the park and put in a pathway that would allow visitors to get closer to Clear Creek.

The third opportunity site sits directly to the north of the creek in between Sheridan Boulevard and Tennyson Street. Because the land is on a floodplain, restricting the city from putting buildings there, the city would like to turn it into a “grassy and naturalistic open space,” Lee said.

Ideally, the open space would connect with similar space in Clear Creek Valley Park, which is adjacent to the opportunity site.

Arvada residents Mark and Christy Nelson said they were excited about the potential changes and new open areas.

“We ride our bikes here a few times a year,” Mark said of the trails in Gold Strike Park. “I would support that plan.”

Christy agreed that the addition of a nature walk or community lawn would make the park a better place to bring family members.

“It would be a place we could bring a mother-in-law, since she can’t ride a bike,” she said.

Lee said the city and its partners aim to complete the planning stage by the fall of 2019, after which they will apply for grants to fund upcoming projects.

“A lot of master plans are completed, and then they go on the shelf and nothing tangible ever happens,” Lee said. “I wanted to do these opportunity sites because those can be actual construction projects we can do.”

For the remainder of the planning stage, city personnel want to hear back from residents about what they think about plans for the corridor. Lee and his team have already gathered some feedback online and through previous events.

Community members will have additional opportunities to give their input on June 8 at the Second Saturdays Concert in Olde Town and on June 26 at Gold Strike Park. Lee said the city will likely plan another opportunity for August.

City employees will also gather feedback through an online survey posted on the Current Projects page of speakup.arvada.org. The survey will be open through June 30.

“Clear Creek exists as a jewel in the metro area,” Lee said. “People are excited. They know how important it is for us to do some preservations efforts and some enhancement.”

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