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Cherry Creek Ecological Support

Quick Facts:

  • Cherry Creek State Park size: 4000 acres
  • Cherry Creek Regional Trail length: 40 miles
  • Watershed: South Platte River Basin

Project Summary:

Great Ecology has supported multiple projects along the Cherry Creek Regional Trail, a forty-mile long trail stretching from the confluence of Cherry Creek and the South Platte River through Cherry Creek State Park in Denver, CO.

1) Great Ecology led revegetation efforts to improve Cherry Creek Reach 2. Our work included revised existing seed and plant mixes, updated soil recommendations based on existing site conditions, and biostabilization and revegetation construction oversight. This reach extended approximately 1,515 feet and efforts were completed in 2018.

2) We provided ecological design support to the redesign and stabilization of a one-mile reach of Cherry Creek from Iliff Avenue to Quebec Street, which experienced significant vertical and horizontal movement as a result of sandy soils, increased urbanization, and high flows from routine maintenance of the Cherry Creek Dam, upstream from the project reach. Great Ecology provided ecological assessments of the corridor, including collecting soil samples; provided ecological design recommendations; developed seed and plant mixes; and provided soil recommendations based on site conditions. Great Ecology also provided biostabilization and revegetation construction oversight.

3) Great Ecology conducted a trail assessment and ecological design evaluation to inform restoration planning at Hentzell Park, a highly utilized 26-acre open space and natural area along the Cherry Creek Regional Trail. Extensive public use led to a social trail system that impacted wildlife habitat and stream stabilization. We developed design recommendations to restore, stabilize, and reconstruct the trail system and other park features. Recommendations included creating designated trailheads, stream access points and overlooks, methods for deterring activities in undesignated areas, minimizing user conflicts between pedestrians and bicyclists, and restoring the riparian corridor.

4) Great Ecology is supporting the ecological design elements of a bank stabilization project at Cherry Creek Reservoir, in Cherry Creek State Park, as well as leading the Clean Water Act (CWA) Section 404 permitting process. The final design will include features to improve water quality of stormwater runoff into the reservoir as well as redesign the project area. This effort includes historic and culturally significant shade structures, and has a high number of informal and social trails.

Arapahoe County, CO