Colorado national parks need cash now to fix up years of delaying repairs

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ESTES PARK, Colo. -- With 12 National Parks in Colorado, park officials in the state are hoping the budget request in Washington will get approved, so there will be much needed funds to make improvements to the state’s natural beauty.

“We have been lucky to compete for and win federal land transportation dollars and to have been allowed to keep entry fees over the past several years,” said Kyle Patterson. “These two things have allowed us to kind of keep up with all of the fix-up issues that come up in this park [Rocky Mountain].”

But around the state from Bent’s Old Fort to Mesa Verde, parks—which are seeing an increase in visitors each year—need money which is being proposed in Washington.

The administration is seeking $150 million for transportation projects on federal lands. The park service is seeking a $243 million increase for operations and construction. This while also asking congress to provide $300 million a year for the next three years to restore and maintain tired facilities.

Here is a list of our National Parks and their needs in Colorado:

National park service deferred maintenance for Colorado, 2014 visitation

  • Bent's Old Fort National Historic Site: $685,451 / 24,555
  • Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park: $ 5,627,262 / 183,045
  • Colorado National Monument: $13,838,509 / 416,862
  • Curecanti National Recreation Area: $9,874,624 / 931,367
  • Dinosaur National Monument: $32,113,913 / 250,625
  • Florissant Fossil Beds National Monument: $3,256,567 / 63,297
  • Great Sand Dunes National Monument and Preserve: $8,125,106 / 271,774
  • Hovenweep National Monument: $106,624 / 26,808
  • Mesa Verde National Park: $63,774,807 / 501,563
  • Rocky Mountain National Park: $ 67,666,035 / 3,434,751
  • Sand Creek Massacre Site: $230,804 / 7,402
  • Yucca House National Monument: $114,131 / na

Total  $ 205,413,831