Based on projected population growth and public surveys in the El Paso County Parks Master Plan in 2013, developing a nature center in the northern El Paso County was established as an objective. It was also identified as an objective in the 2017-2021 El Paso county Strategic Plan.
We are happy that the first phase of the Northern Nature Center has been completed with the Feasibility Report. Altitude land Consultants, with Tremmel Design Group, started with a series of meetings with staff, stakeholders and the public in Northern El Paso County. The purpose was to analyze and evaluate location and research potential partnerships/collaborations, public support, revenue sources, construction costs, and long-term maintenance and staffing.
“Based on detailed site analysis, extensive public input, discussions with stakeholders, thorough financial analysis, and a desire for a site that inspires and captivates, the Feasibility Study recommends Fox Run Regional Park as the location for the Northern El Paso County Nature Center.” The public support and popularity of the park will provide a great start to the new nature center programs and events. For several years the nature camps in Fox Run Regional Park have filled to capacity and guided hikes and programs are always very popular. The park also offers a wonderful example of the greater Black Forest ecology and will serve local schools with a new option for field trips.
Next steps include developing an interpretive master plan, site plans and architectural design. With each step we will always include public input. We will strive to make the facility fit into the park with minimal impact and opportunity for visitors after a visit go into the great trails in the park. Thank you to the planning team and the numerous staff, volunteers and residents that made the feasibility study a success. Serving Northern El Paso County and sharing the wonders of the Black Forest will strengthen the current nature centers, programs and help us continue our mission to connect and inspire stewards for our Parks.