The South Suburban Park Foundation was created to enrich open spaces and to improve parks, trails, greenways and recreational amenities for residents of the south suburban communities of the metropolitan Denver area.
Since 1979, the Foundation has been instrumental in creating much-needed open space opportunities for south suburban communities and residents of all ages.
Working through collaborative partnerships, the Foundation's stellar projects include:
- The Mary Carter GreenwaySouth Platte River Trail;
- The Discovery Pavilion at Chatfield which celebrates the joining of three major trail systems: the South Platte River Trail, the Waterton CanyonColorado Trail, and the Highline Canal Trail;
- The 200-foot clear span pedestrian Platte River bridge providing the vital link over the river and connecting to the Big Dry Creek;
- 10,000 Trees Project engaging more than 3,000 volunteers throughout the river corridors;
- And most recent, the Big Dry Creek Trail which provides the final link to a 14-mile trail loop.
More than $8 million has been secured by the Foundation from a wide range of public and private entities to assure project success throughout the years. Committed funding partners include Great Outdoors Colorado, Colorado State Parks Trails, Federal enhancement program partnering with Colorado Department of Transportation and Denver Regional Council of Government, Urban Drainage and Flood Control District, Colorado Water Conservation Fund, Denver Water, Arapahoe County, Federal Land and Water Conservation Fund, and Jefferson County Open Space.
As the 21st century approached, our vision expanded to increase the greenway benefits. Working with local communities and the natural features of the land, the Big Dry Creek was identified; flows east from the Platte River connecting to the High Line Canal. The true natural and recreational potentials of restoring the valuable qualities this urbanized open space had to offer was realized.
The Big Dry Creek project provides easy connections to the area's premier parks, extensive walking paths, skate parks, inline hockey rink, baseball fields, soccer fields, playgrounds, picnic areas, and other valuable outdoor amenities.
Today, the Foundation continues to provide a common link for governmental agencies by taking the lead in regional outdoor recreation planning which benefits hundreds of thousands of south metro residents.
The South Suburban Park Foundation has embarked on new areas of development in trails. Over the past three decades the Foundation has developed trails, parks and river areas in association with the South Suburban Park and Recreation District. As a result the trail system which links up with the Denver Greenway trail is one of the most comprehensive and attractive trail systems in all of Colorado. Winding along the South Platte River and heading south and east through communities, open space and park land, the Mary Carter Greenway, the Big Dry Creek Trail , the Littleton Community Trail, Lee Gulch Trail connect up with the Bear Creek Trail and the Platte Canyon Trail. Thousands of bicyclists, walkers and runners use these trails for recreation and commuting in the South Metro area.
As a premier non-profit for many years in trail building, SSPF is ready to step into a new area for trails, while making sure that existing trails, with public support, are kept in first rate condition.
The next phase of interest and development is working with other counties, open space planners and trail developers to create a continuous pedestrian loop trail for hiking that will encircle the Denver area and become a major destination for the Denver area. It is a grand project and one that the South Suburban Park Foundation is proud to partner with other communities in the Denver Metro area.
Chairman, South Suburban Park Foundation