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About the Project
Panorama Park is a 13.5 acre neighborhood park located in Southeast Colorado Springs adjacent to Panorama Middle School. It will soon receive the largest neighborhood park renovation in city history thanks to grants from Great Outdoors Colorado, The Colorado Health Foundation, the Colorado Springs Health Foundation and Transforming Safety Colorado. The Trust for Public Land, Southeast Colorado Springs RISE Coalition and El Paso County Public Health continue to provide critical leadership for this project.
The park renovation project aims to:
- Provide a safe, accessible, quality community destination park within a 10-minute walk for many Southeast residents;
- Add new features based upon community driven needs;
- Replace aging equipment;
- Utilize recognized expert partners to advance a resident-led engagement and creative process;
- Re-envision the park to address limited opportunities for play and hazardous conditions.
The City of Colorado Springs and partner organizations want community input and feedback about the renovation of Panorama Park. Check back soon for a schedule of public meetings for the project.
For additional questions or comments please email us at email@example.com
Anticipated Project Timeline
|201 9 March-July||2019 August-December||2020-2021|
|Public Outreach & Master Plan||
Design & Development
|Hire Contractor & Construction|
2019 January - July
In January and February 2019 The Trust for Public Land (TPL) through secured grant dollars jointly worked with the City of Colorado Springs and other project stakeholders to bring on a design consultant team. This team will work closely with TPL and stakeholders in the final outreach process which will bring forward a final Master Plan vision for Panorama Park. The plan is then formally presented to the Parks, Recreation & Cultural Services Advisory Board for review and approval.
Once approved, the next step is to carry this design work forward from August through December in preparation for bringing on a contractor, and beginning construction in 2020. The design team begins material and location selection, known as the Design Development process. This process refines the design, finalizing material selection and spatial layout of the park and its amenities, such as: walkways, shelters, site furniture, the play space and equipment, the community gathering plaza, play fields, basketball courts, etc. Then Construction Drawings are completed which inform a contractor of how they must cost, bid and build the park.
The City of Colorado Springs will administer a construction contract, and coordinate implementation of certain elements with partner organizations. The City targets taking the park project out for competitive bid in early 2020, with construction starting mid-year 2020.
This project stems from 2 planning processes, an Urban Land Institute Advisory Services Panel Report for Southeast Colorado Springs and The Trust for Public Land’s - Parks for People Program committed to ensuring that every American lives within a 10-minute walk of a quality park or near an amazing outdoor experience.
Urban Land Institute
The ULI study interviewed over 85 individuals, reviewed past plans and studies, and engaged in site tours to develop a number of strategic recommendations. Recommendations include Link to Nature, noting that many people reflected that the best part of living in Colorado Springs is access to nature; however, Southeast lacks the same connections to nature as the rest of the city. The plan also references the need for Community Gathering Space since residents expressed a great need and desire to have a place to come together, celebrate, and support social connectivity. The study noted that almost every resident the panel talked with referred to the need for a community gathering space. Some wanted a space for organized sport, some for celebrating quinceañeras, and others an outdoor amphitheater. Overall, the ULI plan served as a launching point to address community needs.
Park Discovery Process
Utilizing the ULI study completed early in 2018, TPL and the City subsequently sought to identify opportunities to leverage shared resources to improve neighborhood parks in Southeast. Based on site tours, TPL staff used GIS data to analyze impact factors such as population of low-income residents, population density, and population of children under the age of 18.
In an effort to expand TPL’s Parks for People Program to Colorado Springs, the City and TPL engaged in a park discovery process funded by the Colorado Springs Health Foundation. The Parks for People program (launched in 2012) has demonstrated that increased park usage and health outcomes are achieved through extensive community engagement, from the beginning of the planning process until long after a park’s construction. This participatory design process strengthens community bonds and will ensure that Panorama Park is cared for long into the future.
The participatory design process which TPL has undertaken for the project has brought a number of exciting partners to the table, some of whom have never worked with the City before. A list of partners include the: RISE Coalition, Deerfield Hills Community Center, Panorama Middle School, New Directions/Agape Services, Second Chance Through Faith and local residents committed to improving their community.
Once a site was identified Panorama Park visioning began with a community engagement strategy led by The Trust for Public Land informed by key organizations that have direct and meaningful impact in the community. Organizations were empowered to harness their unique talents to bring people back to the park and engage them in a conversation about how the park could be improved. Another component of the strategy was creative placemaking, a cooperative, community-based process using arts and cultural expression to rejuvenate parks, thus deepening a sense of place and inspiring community pride. Overall, we used four different components to solicit community feedback and activate the park: youth outreach, a written survey, a picture survey, and special events.
Youth Outreach: Local organizations, including Deerfield Hills Community Center, Second Chance Through Faith, and New Dimensions offered a variety of ways to work with youth. Since the majority of outreach occurred over the summer, our ability to connect with Panorama Middle School in the initial process was minimal, but the school distributed the survey to students prior to the end of the school year. We now engaged the school to have student help design specific park features.
Over the summer, Deerfield Hills Community Center held 8 Play in the Park events, which regularly hosted 25-35 attendees. During these events, TPL visited with the children, staff and parents, distributed surveys and asked for their vision for the park. Similarly, TPL visited with youth from New Directions and Second Chance Through Faith for local youth feedback on local parks and the renovation of Panorama Park. Youth at New Directions decided to engage in a survey challenge, which resulted in the collection of 238 surveys. Second Chance Through Faith coordinated a youth talent show at Meet Me at The Park, which showcased local talent and demonstrated how the park could be used for events.
Written Survey: The survey was developed with input from the RISE Coalition and resulted in 474 responses from the community. The RISE Coalition collected 128 surveys, New Directions collected 238 surveys, Panorama Middle School returned 82 surveys, and Second Chance Through Faith provided 26 surveys. The results of the surveys outlined in the attachment illustrate the community priorities.
Picture Survey: Approximately 300 people responded to the picture survey which was provided both in paper form and during the first Meet Me In the Park Event where attendees used stickers to vote for their favorite images. The picture survey asked the question “How do you play?” Photos were arranged across 8 categories of activities. The results of the picture survey are detailed in the attachment.
Meet Me in the Park! Events: The “Meet Me In The Park!” carnivals were organized by the RISE Coalition. The events were promoted through organizational networks, on social media, and by direct mailing to local residents. Each event included games and activities such as a bounce house, games, face painting, and family activities. The events also included free food and raffle prizes. The September event hosted a youth talent show organized by Second Chance Through Faith and a film project premiere by New Directions. Other key partners included Deerfield Hills Community Center, Solid Rock Economic Development Corporation, and The Trust for Public Land.
This project is truly unique in its collaborative process and the amenities it will offer for Southeast residents. As the first project between the City and TPL to bring the Parks for People program to Colorado Springs, this will serve as a model for future opportunities.
Youth Advisory Council
We are seeking youth from the Southeast to be a part of a Youth Advisory Council for the Panorama Park Master Plan Project. As a member of the council, you will work with community leaders and design professionals to transform Panorama Park into a truly amazing park for the whole community!
- Applicants must be between 12-18 years old and live in Southeast Colorado Springs.
- Permission from parent or guardian to participate.
- Selected youth will be expected to attend one Youth Advisory Council meeting every month from April-August 2019 (about six meetings total).
- Youth will attend and help lead one to three additional community outreach events.
- Youth will collect surveys to gather opinions on the park’s design from their friends, family members, and neighbors.
- Youth completing the position requirements will be compensated for their participation in the Youth Advisory Council with a reward valued at $200.00 upon completion of their time on the Council.
- Lunch or dinner will be provided at all Youth Advisory Council meetings.
- Training in skills such as community engagement, public speaking, and park design.