River Vision is a collaborative effort creating an urban river environment in Denver that is healthy, habitable and connected by focusing on ecosystem restoration through sustainable natural systems. With an initial budget of just $25,000 and a large number of partner organizations providing in-kind support, Denver Parks and Recreation initiated the River Vision North effort in 2008 with the intent of studying this once forgotten stretch of river ahead of the expected development pressure that was sure to follow. Now ten years later, this stretch of river has well over a billion dollar’s worth of active redevelopment adjacent to its banks and that little $25,000 plan has helped ensure that the River is a focal point for reinvestment and not the forgotten dumping ground it once was.
You will start your tour at the National Western Stock Show, which is undergoing a massive $800 million redevelopment on the banks of the S. Platte River, and learn how the new campus plan is creating a year-round destination to engage local visitors and promote out-of-state tourism in collaboration with partners such as Western Stock Show Association, Colorado State University, the Denver Museum of Nature & Science, and History Colorado. Next, you will cross the river to learn about Denver’s new 80-acre, $20 million regional Carpio-Sanguinette Park, a partnership between Denver Public Works and Denver Parks to provide stormwater detention and water quality in a state-of-the-art regional park. Participants will then tour the nearly completed Globeville Landing Park, another partnership project involving water quality and detention that is rebuilding a long-forgotten park into a new $15 million community park. The tour concludes at the River North Park and Promenade where participants will learn about the exciting redevelopment of industrial sections of the river into a $12 million,10-acre park and adjacent river promenade on what was once a busy city boulevard along the river.