National Parks to receive more than $50M for maintenance, infrastructure

Beaver Pond at Rocky Mountain National Park / National Park Service
Beaver Pond at Rocky Mountain National Park / National Park Service

ROCKY MOUNTAIN NATIONAL PARK — More than $50 million will be distributed to high priority maintenance and infrastructure projects at 42 parks in 29 states, including Colorado.

While visiting Rocky Mountain National Park, U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke and Colorado Senator Cory Gardner announced Saturday Rocky Mountain National Park will receive $200,000 in federal funds matched by $200,000 from the Rocky Mountain Conservancy to reduce deferred maintenance on the Alluvial Fan Trail.

It’s all thanks to Congress, who provided $20 million for the projects as part of the Centennial Challenge program, which will be matched by $33 million from more than 50 park partners to improve trails, restore buildings and increase visitor access to parks.

“Our national parks span twelve time zones and attract more than 330 million visitors every year. Some locations, like Rocky Mountain National Park, attract millions of visitors alone. This puts an incredible stress on the aging infrastructure at our parks and thanks to Centennial Grants and the generosity of public-private partners, we are able to distribute funds to rebuild our parks,” said Secretary Zinke. “These funds will help us continue to provide a world-class experience to visitors and ensure that these amazing places are around for future generations.”

Examples of the more than 50 projects the Centennial Challenge program will fund this year using partner donations and federal matching funds include:

  • Centennial Challenge funds will complement a donation announced last year from philanthropist David M. Rubenstein to the National Park Foundation that will repair and restore the Lincoln Memorial in addition to expanding educational resources and public access.
  • Funding from Yellowstone Forever will improve overlooks along the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone.
  • The Gettysburg Foundation will help create a multi-use trail at Gettysburg National Military Park that will connect the visitor center to a historic farm that was used as a field hospital during the battle.
  • Friends of Saguaro National Park, the Western National Park Association, and G. Arthur Jansson are teaming up to create an accessible outdoor classroom space at Saguaro National Park.

Since 2015 the National Park Service has leveraged over $45 million in funding from congress through the Centennial Challenge program to attract more than $77 million from partner organizations to support over hundreds of projects across the country.

>> Click here for a complete list of Centennial Challenge projects and partners.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s