Lone Tree and South Suburban Parks and Recreation District are jointly planning a new 65-acre park in RidgeGate East that will become a “signature project” for the city. The city is partnering …
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Lone Tree and South Suburban Parks and Recreation District are jointly planning a new 65-acre park in RidgeGate East that will become a “signature project” for the city.
The city is partnering with South Suburban to create a master plan for a regional park near the intersection of RidgeGate Parkway and South Peoria Street. The park will be the largest developed park in RidgeGate East.
“It's going to be something that defines our community going forward,” said Austin Good, assistant to the city manager. “We're not going to have another park facility of this scale within Lone Tree boundaries.”
Good was one of seven members of an interviewing committee to determine a designer for the project, which included representatives from the city, South Suburban and Coventry Development, RidgeGate's master developer. RidgeGate East is the budding development east of I-25 and south of Lincoln Avenue in Lone Tree that is expected to be the heart of Lone Tree once it builds out over the next 40 years. The park will go near the site of a planned attainable housing project as well.
Good presented before council during a Jan. 7 study session announcing Architerra Group was chosen to design the park.
“Now that we're starting to see development happen over there (RidgeGate East), it's important that we lay down what the future vision of this park is going to look like,” Good said. “This is giving us an idea of what dirt needs to move, what the programming at the park is going to be—how many fields, where the trails are going to go, is there going to be a skate park, dog park, whatever is going to go there.”
The site area for the park is bisected by Happy Canyon Creek, a feature, Good said, that provides “challenges and opportunities” for the park. A new recreation center is planned to be built near the park as well.
The park site is part of a master plan addendum through South Suburban. Five parks are planned for RidgeGate East, according to the addendum, including the regional park, rec center, 58 acres of “Village Parks,” 404 acres of open space and 14.5 acres for public space in what is known as Lone Tree City Center in RidgeGate East's northwest corner.
The RidgeGate East Subarea plans include about 15.75 miles of regional and local multi-use trails. The 3.61-mile East-West Trail was completed in RidgeGate in 2019.
The city is splitting the cost of about $100,000 with SSPRD to draft the plan by the end of the year. The drafting process will begin in late January of this year. Opportunities for citizen input will be advertised come spring.
“We also want to make sure that what happens in the regional park complements and enhances recreation in the City of Lone Tree along with the offerings of South Suburban,” Mayor Jackie Millet.
Millet added this park would not be able fulfill everything residents may want in a park but noted this will not be the only park in RidgeGate.
Councilmember Jay Carpenter said it will be a unique challenge for the city being able to plan a full-sized park without having to retrofit it into an existing community.
“It would be good for the community, particularly with the growth we've had in that area,” said John Ajie, chair of the Lone Tree Citizens' Recreation Advisory Committee, a committee of citizens to work with city staff and South Suburban to enhance Lone Tree recreation. “The key then becomes for (Architerra) to come up with something the community can be proud of in the long term.”
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