Parks Trails and Open Space Conservation Programs

Parks, Trails and Open Space Update - Summer 2018
from the Community Resources and Public Works Departments

Summer is officially here, and to help inform residents about important Town activities this season, we’re sending this message about programs under way to maintain and improve the community’s parks, trails and open space areas. We’re using industry best practices and technology to ensure work is done effectively and efficiently, with an emphasis on soil vitality, water conservation and overall sustainability for years to come. In this message, we’re sharing a brief overview of these programs and answering some frequently asked questions.

Throughout the year, the Town’s Community Resources and Public Works teams focus on three key initiatives to protect and enhance the parks, trails and open spaces that make Firestone a beautiful place to live, work and play. They are: 

1 – Soil Maintenance and Enhancement through aeration and fertilization;
2 – Water Management and Conservation through expansion and updates to the Town’s irrigation systems, and technology that monitors the weather and controls watering schedules and volumes based on changes in temperature and precipitation levels; and
3 – Sustainability based on smart planning as new parks, trails and open spaces are constructed and existing areas are updated to incorporate native grasses and xeriscaping designs that use less water.

In upcoming communications, we’ll share more information about the three areas listed above, introduce you to staff working on these programs, and show how the technology we use collects and analyzes data that guides daily maintenance and future planning of these important public spaces.

If you have further questions or want to share input, you can contact:

Julie Pasillas, Community Resources Director, email, 303-531-6258

Theo Abkes, Public Works Director, email, 303-833-3544

As always, thank you for your interest and support. To keep up to date on Town programs and other news, continue to visit the Town website , read the Firestone Voice newsletter at www.firestoneco.gov/FirestoneVoice, and follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

Q. Does the Town have a Conservation/Efficiency Plan?

A. Yes, the Town has had two State approved conservation plans.  The first Water Conservation Plan was approved in 2007, and the second Water Efficiency Plan Update was approved in 2015.  The 2015 Water Efficiency Plan Update is available here.

Q. What steps is Firestone taking to ensure the Town owned irrigated areas are complying with water efficiency measures?

A. Firestone has completed the installation of a central irrigation control system called iCentral.  In addition, to the iCentral system technology benefits, the Town has two dedicated irrigation staff members that have been added to the Firestone team.  They are focusing on operating and maintaining the irrigation systems in all Town owned irrigated areas.  A large focus for irrigation staff in 2018 has been, and continues to be getting the irrigation system infrastructure operating efficiently as possible.  They have been identifying leaks within the system and repairing the leaks.  You may see them working in our parks as they turn on all of the zones and check the system. These efforts will continue throughout the year as repairs and adjustments are being made.

Q. What changes might be seen in Town Parks this year?

A. The color of the grass will be the most obvious change.  Irrigation staff is working on adjustments to watering schedules with the iCentral system.  Some adjustments are reducing day and time amounts of water schedules to assist in water conservation and cool season turf grass (Kentucky bluegrass) root development and growth.  For additional information on drought tolerant bluegrass and irrigation frequency please visit, http://www.northernwater.org/docs/WaterConservation/FactSheets/1_DroughtTolerantBluegrass.pdf and http://www.northernwater.org/docs/WaterConservation/FactSheets/2_IrrigationFreuency.pdf.  Another change is the Parks Department is implementing a fertilization program that will provide the appropriate nutrients needed for cold season turf grass and an aeration program to address soil compaction to promote oxidization and water absorption. The Town has begun the process of analyzing our park areas to see where we can convert areas to native grass. This conversion will begin this year in some of our parks.       

Q. What new parks are being built in Firestone, and when will they be completed?

A. At this time the only parks that are in the planning stages is Central Park. Here is a list of several improvements that are being done at other locations in Firestone. Peninsula Park in Barefoot is nearing completion, trails are scheduled to be installed at Neighbors Point Park along with installing a swing by the new playground, trail connection from Cimarron to Home Depot, trail connection between Ridge Crest & St. Vrain Ranch. Replacement of some playground equipment at Onorato & Patterson parks.

Q. Can I hold an event in a Town park, and how do I get approval to do so?

A. Yes you can hold an event in a park, to do so you need to contact our event coordinator at email.