South Platte River Vision Planning & Assessment
December 23, 2021
Globeville Landing Stream & Outfall Design
October 1, 2019

First Creek Nature Play Park Ecological Design

Denver, CO

Clients: Denver Parks & Recreation | Hile High Flood District

Project Partners: Valerian LLC | Jacobs Engineering | Naranjo Civil Constructor


Acre Park


Sq. Ft. Playground

Project Summary:

Great Ecology provided ecological design support to the project team for the redesign of a reach of First Creek into a six acre nature play themed park, the largest of its kind in Denver. Our team developed a planting plan that is conducive to exploration and imagination while still being resilient and low maintenance considering over half of the park sits within the South Platte floodplain. We coordinated with project geomorphologists, landscape architects, and engineers to develop a design that functions within the context of the landscape and engages park users in a way that enlivens the senses and encourages out-of-the-box thinking.
Great Ecology led the post-construction adaptive management program for the site and coordinated with the clients and contractors. Responsibilities included invasive species management and wetland mitigation establishment.

Photo courtesy Valerian LLC

Restoration, Focused on Play:

From strategically placed rocks for hopping to shallow streams for wading, nature play features help bring children and adults closer to nature in a fun and sustainable way.

Photo courtesy Bienenstock Natural Playgrounds

Design & Oversight Through an Ecological Lens

The Great Ecology team provided extensive support for park design and construction monitoring to ensure the ecological goals of the project were met.

First Creek makes the news!