New water use plan for High Line Canal

Posted at 6:42 AM, May 01, 2017
and last updated 2017-05-01 09:12:39-04

DENVER — Six months of public input is turning into action for a local conservancy group. The High Line Canal has a new vision and will soon have a new use.

The High Line Canal Conservancy unveiled the "Community Vision Plan" on Friday. The plan outlines a set of objectives to preserve the natural habitat, add safety features to the recreation trail and a plan to change the usage of the canal.

With fewer people using the canal for irrigation in recent years, Denver Water is planning to switch gears and use it for stormwater.

"Cleaning the water and making sure it gets to receiving water in a good state," said Tom Roode, Denver Water Chief Operations and Maintenance Officer.

Roode said the plan is also aiming to protect the wildlife habitat of the canal and its banks, but will come with challenges.

"Water rights challenges, permitting challenges, making sure that flood protection is safe for the public and property owners," said Roode.

The Urban Drainage and Flood Control Districts are studying how to make the stormwater project possible.

Denver Water has three demonstration projects planned out for the canal. Leaders hope to get a start by the end of the year.

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