IN RESPONSE | Federal fund gave us many of our outdoor play spaces


Arapahoe County’s commissioners on Tuesday awarded more than $3.4 million in grants to nine cities, towns and special districts for a variety of park, recreation and beautification projects.

“In times like these, it is more important than ever that we encourage residents to get outside and experience nature,” said Shannon Carter, director of Arapahoe County Open Spaces. “Continued investment in our outdoor spaces increases accessibility, safety and enjoyment of our local parks and trails, and at the same time helps protect the places we treasure for generations to come.”

Since 2003, voters have approved a quarter-cent increase to the sales and use tax, from which a portion goes to open space projects. The tax expires in 2023 if it is not renewed. For the 15 projects approved this week, the grant recipients will provide an additional $2 million in funding.

The grant recipients include:

Arapahoe Park and Recreation District: $161,000 will go towards basketball court upgrades in Centennial, playground improvements in the county and a new master plan for Centennial’s Fox Hill Park.

Aurora: $1 million will help improve trails, install native plans and place interpretive signage at Plains Conservation Center and renovate Canterbury Park.

Bennett: The town will receive $487,000 for a fishing pond with a dock, picnic area and ramp.

Sheridan: $68,4000 will be used for a new trail connection from Oxford Avenue to River Run Trailhead.

Englewood: The city will use $350,000 for installing new facilities at Romans Park.

Greenwood Village: $90,000 will allow for construction of two new pickleball courts.

Cherry Creek Vista Park and Recreation District: Peakview Park will receive $100,000 for improvements.

South Suburban Park and Recreation District: $736,000 will go towards picnic shelter and restroom renovations in Littleton and a new playground, picnic pavilion and basketball court in Centennial.

Littleton: $440,600 will go to stream stabilization and erosion control, planning for an addition to Reynolds Landing Park, and a trail connection from Slaughterhouse Gulch Park to Geneva Park.

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