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River Park at Las Colonias: 2021 Great Place in Colorado Public Space

by Ken Sherbenou, Grand Junction Parks and Recreation Director

 

Among river recreation features across Colorado, the River Park at Las Colonias is truly unique. The feature was built with the entire community in mind. Typically, a river park is geared towards highly skilled kayakers, but the River Park at Las Colonias was built to suit all users. During the summer of 2020, the River Park stayed open during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, becoming the community’s escape not only from the Grand Junction summer heat but from the stressors in everyone’s lives. Over the past year and a half that the park has been open, Grand Junction has seen why this new amenity is truly a Great Place in Colorado.

The River Park at Las Colonias located within the larger Las Colonias Park connects users of the park to the Colorado River. This Great Place is just steps away from the River Front Trail system , spanning from Palisade in the east to Fruita in the west. Having the River Park close to the trail system adds to Grand Junction’s livable built environment by connecting more people to the outdoors with various transportation options. The River Park also represents harmony with nature as the park acts as a side-channel for the endangered fish species in the Colorado River. Grand Junction strives to bring more recreational opportunities to the community, and having a water amenity adds to this goal. This Great Place builds upon Grand Junction’s healthy community standards by adding more diverse recreational options for the community to participate in. The River Park has also been a significant stepping stone to building Grand Junction’s resilient economy. The River Park is surrounded by businesses in the Las Colonias Park , including Bonsai, Grand Junction Stand Up Paddle Boards, Edgewater Brewery, the Las Colonias Amphitheater, RockyMounts, food trucks, and more businesses will be moving to the park in the near future. The River Park attracts users to the area and, in return, has brought revenue into the local economy, which has seen a blossoming of tourism in recent years. 

The River Park at Las Colonias has brought immense value to the Grand Junction community. The City of Grand Junction is excited to see the community utilize this amenity for years to come.

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