We Have TOPS Yard Signs!
Do you love trails?
Do you love open spaces?
Do you love parks?
We do, too!
And we’d love you to place one of these in your yard if:
- You live along a busy street where it will be seen.
- You live in COS where people can vote on Issue 1
- You are willing to pick one up from our office (or make arrangements with staff)
Let’s win this!
PARK AND TRAIL News
Improvements and Reclamation in RRCOS
Trail improvements and reclamation work have started in Red Rock Canyon Open Space. The Roundup Trail is closed between Mesa Trail and Red Rock Rim Trail. The closure started on Feb. 13th and will continue for several weeks. The purpose of this closure is to restore this area to what it would have been like before dams, ponds and other man-made features were built during the pre-open space era. Work will also be done on the trails in the immediate closure area to enhance visitor experience and make the trails more sustainable. Park staff has promised to minimize impact to users.
South Academy Boulevard Improvements Project
Thursday, February 16th the City of Colorado Springs is hosting a public open house for the South Academy Boulevard Improvements Project. While primarily focused on the roadway, drainage, and public transportation enhancements along the corridor, the project includes a new multiuse path that will provide increased multimodal access to the Sand Creek Trail and numerous destinations from Bijou Street to Jet Wing Drive. Constructed is expected to begin next week on February 20th. This is an opportunity to learn more about the project and any impacts to travel that you may encounter for the expected 24-month project duration.
Public Open House Information
When: Thursday, Feb. 16, 5-7 p.m.
Where: Pikes Peak Library District – Sand Creek Library
1821 S. Academy Boulevard, Colorado Springs
For more information
Project website: ColoradoSprings.gov/AcademyBlvdImprovements
Project updates: To receive project updates, send your email address to AcademyBlvdImprovements@gmail.com
Project hotline: (719) 427-6422
Black Forest Section 16 – Come Share Your Opinion!
March 8th 6:30 pm
Black Forest Community Club 12530 Black Forest Road
Black Forest Trails Association has invited EPC Parks Executive Director Todd Marts to their March 8th public meeting to discuss Black Forest Section 16. Those attending will receive updates AND have the opportunity to share their vision for the leased property. Background: EPC’s lease with the State Land Board expired last year. The county agreed to renew for 10 years. The annual cost increased from $452/year to $21,825 per year. Many who use the 4- mile perimeter trail asked the question: “should the land be purchased?” This public meeting is your chance to get updates and share your ideas on Black Forest Section 16.
New Benches at the Incline
On Sunday, February 5, a group of 11 volunteers, including five members of the Incline Friends Board of Directors, installed two new benches near the base of the Incline. Between those benches they repositioned a bench that had been installed by an Eagle Scout in 2021. The new benches are made of Douglas fir. All three benches were produced at a sawmill in Penrose and all materials, including timbers for the retaining wall, were provided by Incline Friends.
RISE|Southeast Youth Advisory Council presentation to the Parks Board
Members of the RISE|Southeast Youth Advisory Council (YAC) recently had the opportunity to address the City of Colorado Springs Parks, Recreation and Cultural Services Parks Advisory Board. Representatives from RISE leadership, Trust for Public Land, Daily Dose 719 and TOSC were in support as the youth described enhancements they would like to see included along the Sand Creek Trail in Southeast Colorado Springs (SECOS).
The YAC members selected the trail as the focus of their efforts after a comprehensive review of all the parks, schoolyards and the urban trail in SECOS. They believed that while the trail was physically in good shape, including additional benches for users, lighting for safety, and an art component would enhance the ability for this critical trail segment to provide far greater value to the neighborhoods it serves.
The Parks Board members were very impressed by the YAC’s initiative and were quite complimentary in their comments, providing encouragement for this project and looking forward to seeing how they could support it moving forward.
TOPS Trail Projects – 2023
Just how mighty is that one penny on every 10 dollars spent in COS? You’d be surprised. This year TOPS could “top” $12 million! Close to 20% of that can be used on trail construction and maintenance. This years’ list includes:
- Chamberlain Trail $250,000 (trail acquisition, design and construction)
- Greenways at Sand Creek Park Bridge $250,000 (bridge to connect Sand Creek Trail to new park)
- Legacy Loop – South Railroad bridge replacement $1,800,000 (grant match public works project)
We are particularly excited about getting closer to completing the Legacy Loop. Without the bridge replacement project, it won’t be possible to connect the Shooks Run Trail to the Pikes Peak Greenway. This trail connection actually strengthens the city’s federal grant request because it provides multi- modal opportunities – a win-win! Next week we will feature candidate responses to TOPS/Parks questions – don’t miss it!
TOSC Member Hike
February 25th at 11am
Coleman Community Park
Peaks N Pines Parking Lot
(4005 Tutt Blvd.)
Join us for an urban adventure along the social trail network that runs along Sand Creek behind UCHealth Field. We are excited to give our members a behind-the-scenes look at the Norman “Bulldog” Coleman Community Park project, currently in the last phase of its master planning process. We will visit key locations to discuss planned project elements and check out alignment for the future Sand Creek Trail extension that will connect existing paved trail north of Barnes Road south to North Carefree Blvd. During our hike, we’ll be picking up litter along the way in support of our regional Leave No Trace initiative. Following the hike we invite members to join us at Peaks N Pines Brewery for a beverage.
Shout out- Wesley Trimble
“I should say it more often, but thank you so much for all of the time your team puts into the Trail Talk newsletter. In just 10-15 minutes a week, I always feel like I have a great sense of what’s going on with outdoor conservation in the Pikes Peak region. It’s such a great resource—well done!”
Thank you for the kind words, Wesley.
Community & Job Openings
PikeRide is searching for an Executive Director
This position will carry out the mission of the organization. This person will continue to drive growth and demonstrate passion for building community, micro-mobility and Colorado Springs; a leader who will be responsible for the fulfillment of PikeRide’s mission, vision, and values.
18th Annual Bighorn Sheep Day
Sat., February 18th, 10:00 – 2:00 pm
Garden of the Gods Visitor and Nature Center
Free Family Fun Wildlife viewing station to look for bighorn sheep. Nature Walks, Nature Presentations, Live Animals, Education Booths, Youth Crafts, Games, Costume Characters, Free Giveaways, and lots more!
10:15 AM- Interactive Bighorn Survival Game (Youth 6 – Adults).
11:00 AM – Bighorn Sheep in Garden of the Gods
12:00 PM – Colorado Natives, Live Animal Program by Nature’s Educators
1:15 PM – Rampart Range Herd Update (our local heard)
Winter Social at Kinship Landing
Wed. February 22nd
5pm- optional 5k
6-9pm vendor social
Kinship Landing is hosting a Winter Social to help you find people who want to get out there with you. Warm up with a 5k run with Aravapia and then head to Kinship Landing’s Greenhaus for live music, all the best local vendors, and a chance to hand with other people who know that what’s in your pack is just as important as who you pack in with.
Mayoral Candidate Forum
Tues., March 7 | 5:30-6:45pm
Join Palmer Land Conservatory for a 2023 Mayoral Candidate Forum – an opportunity for the community to hear Colorado Springs mayoral candidates weigh in on topics that are integral to living in southern Colorado
Submit candidate questions to
email@example.com by March 1, 2023. For more info, visit palmerland.org