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The Town knows hockey and ice skating are popular in Colorado. Most ice rinks in Colorado have been built through either a public/private partnership or by a dedicated funding source, such as taxes. (Some of that is due to the cost to build and maintain them). While there has been some interest from the private sector in building a new ice rink in Castle Rock, no construction is currently planned. Currently, the Downtown Development Authority has its seasonal Rink at the Rock Downtown at Fifth and Perry streets. It’s generally open each year from Starlighting in November through Presidents’ Day.
This project was proposed as a public/private partnership in 2015 between the Town of Castle Rock and Snowsports 365. At this time, the Town has not received a request from Snowsports 365 to move forward with development of facility, which is dependent on a private investment. The potential for this project still exists, but we do not have a timeframe for development.
Overall, 28 percent of Castle Rock is currently dedicated to parks and open space – either public or private. Town planners estimate that more than a third of Castle Rock’s total area will be dedicated to open space when the Town is fully built out. (View our map, which shows both current and planned parks and open space.)
Remember, what looks like open space may not be defined as open space. Some areas of Town may look like open space because there is nothing built there. In fact, many of these “open” areas of land were entitled for development in previous years – some back to the 1980s. Along with market demand, these developers are following through on the use of those entitlements.
Castle Rock is 34.31 square miles (or 21,958 acres). Here is a breakdown of parks and open space within Town:
Town-owned open space: 2,864 acres
HOA or Metro District open space: 1,444 acres
Douglas County open space: 716 acres within Town limits
Town-managed parks: 587 acres
Red Hawk Ridge Golf Course: 195 acres
Castle Rock Recreation Center: 10 acres
Private parks: 29 acres
Private recreation facilities: 68 acres
Douglas County parks within Town limits: 57 acres
Planned Town-owned parks: 252 acres
Learn about the Town’s parks and open space at CRgov.com/Parks.
Currently, Rock Park consists of several parcels the Town has purchased over time in an effort to enhance this iconic landmark. The land that was purchased is designated as R-1 Single-Family, which would allow detached one-family dwellings, small in-home day cares, indoor and outdoor recreation, and underground public utilities, among other uses.
In May 2017, Castle Rock Parks and Recreation proposed a new zoning classification that would remove the single-family residence zoning and allow for recreation and cultural/arts facilities use. The intent of the proposed zoning classification was to have one zone designation that could cover all active parks within Town. Upon hearing public feedback, the Town is now considering a special zoning district specifically for Rock Park.
An ordinance will be presented to Town Council at its Oct. 17 meeting. The purpose is to create a new zone classification, the PL-3 District. This will officially define the park as a natural area and will align the park’s permitted uses with the activities and facilities that currently exist.
Learn more at an informational public meeting from 5:30 to 7 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 7 in the Town Hall lobby, 100 N. Wilcox St. Parks and Recreation staff will be on hand to answer questions and address concerns. Please keep in mind, this new zoning classification would not change any of the park’s features – only make it easier for the Town to maintain the monument.
The PL-3 District would define the park as a natural area with the exception of the service items and features already in existence at the park. Permitted uses on the proposed PL-3 District will generally include open space; wildlife sanctuary; trails and associated service facilities such as restrooms, picnic pavilions and information kiosks; off-street parking and driveways; and temporary community events. Additionally, the PL-3 District would allow for the continued maintenance and operation of the flagpole and Star.
Other public hearing opportunities will be at the Town’s Planning Commission meeting Thursday, Sept. 28. Town Council is also scheduled to review the proposed zoning change for the first time at its Tuesday, Oct. 17 meeting. Both Town Council and Planning Commission meetings begin at 6 p.m. in Town Hall Council Chambers, 100 N. Wilcox St.
Currently, the Rock Park site is just over 62 acres and consists of eight previously separated parcels acquired as public open space between 1947 and 1991. Securing this new zoning would help officially consolidate the entire park site. This will help with maintenance for Rock Park and the Star.
This central gathering place is transforming into a modern Downtown center thanks to a partnership between the Town and the Downtown Development Authority.
Construction is underway on the park, located at Second and Perry streets Downtown. Planned new amenities include a landing pavilion, splash pad, fire pits, an open lawn, a creek-side picnic area, market plaza, bridge connections to Town Hall parking, improved lighting and seating, an overlook walkway with an iconic lantern feature and a water-play area in Sellars Gulch. In addition to the new amenities, stormwater improvements along Sellars Gulch will be implemented to align with natural flood plain regulations and provide public access to the creek.
The project is expected to be completed in fall 2017. The total project cost is about $6.9 million. Get weekly updates at CRgov.com/FestivalPark. Learn more about the DDA at downtowncastlerock.com.