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Great Outdoors Colorado (GOCO) awarded $33.2 M in grants.

GOCO awards $33.2 million to get kids outside, build trails, and conserve and restore land

DENVER – The Great Outdoors Colorado (GOCO) Board awarded $33.2 million in grants across the state of Colorado, $13.5 million of which is part of the Inspire Initiative to get kids outside.

Six Inspire pilots were awarded funding to community- and youth-led coalitions to invest in places, programs, and pathways to that will make the outdoors more accessible for Colorado families.

All three pillars of GOCO’s five-year strategic plan awarded funding this round, with the Protect and Connect initiatives also announcing grants.

The Protect Initiative invests in large-scale, once-in-a-lifetime land conservation opportunities in Colorado and funded four more projects this grant cycle. The Connect Initiative, which aims to close trail gaps and increase foot and bike access for Coloradans, awarded its first round of planning grants to help municipalities navigate the complicated design and engineering process of trail building.

The open space grant program awarded funding to 10 projects that will sustain local agriculture and economies, give outdoor recreationists a place to play (or simply enjoy the view), protect wildlife habitat, and safeguard the state’s water supply.

The transaction costs grant program also awarded funding to help landowners place conservation easements on their land. To be eligible for the program, landowners are required to donate the entire value of the conservation easement for the project.

GOCO funded grants through its habitat restoration grant program, which funds projects that manage invasive species, protect Colorado’s water supply, mitigate fire fuels, and perform other critical restoration work.

GOCO also awarded Youth Corps funding through the Colorado Youth Corps Association (CYCA), a statewide coalition of nine accredited youth corps groups that engage and train youth, young adults, and veterans (ages 16-25) to work on land, water, and energy conservation projects.

Corps members earn a stipend for their full-time service and an AmeriCorps education award to use toward college or trade school. The organization serves 1,700 young people annually.

In total, GOCO funding will:

· Fund 63 projects in 35 counties

· Help nearly 42,000 kids get outside in six Inspire Initiative pilot communities

· Employ 175 youth through the Colorado Youth Corps Association

· Restore 663 acres of habitat

· Conserve 97,289 acres of land, including critical wildlife habitat, productive agricultural land, scenic views, and outdoor recreation access

· Leverage $47 million in local match dollars and $17 million in donated land value

Funded projects are listed in alphabetical order by grant program. Click here to read the full press release>>

CONNECT PLANNING GRANTS – $1 MILLION TOTAL FUNDING

Carbondale to Crested Butte Trail Plan, $100,000 grant to Pitkin County

City of Fort Morgan Trail Master Plan, $100,000 grant to the City of Fort Morgan

Clear Creek Greenway: East Idaho Springs Planning, $100,000 grant to the City of Idaho Springs in partnership with the Clear Creek Greenway Authority (CCGA)

Complete the Ring Planning Project: $100,000 grant to the City of Colorado Springs in partnership with the Trails and Open Space Coalition (TOSC)

Delta County Trails Master Plan, $100,000 grant to Delta County

Evergreen North Lake Trail Planning Project, $100,000 grant to Evergreen Park and Recreation District (EVPRD)

Greenhorn Valley Trails Master Plan, $73,000 grant to Colorado City Metro District

LoVa Trail Phase III, $75,000 grant to the City of Glenwood Springs

Namaqua Trail Underpass, $97,000 grant to the City of Loveland

Palisade Plunge, $90,000 grant to the Town of Palisade

Wildcat Trail, $65,000 grant to Thompson Rivers Parks and Recreation District (TRPRD)

HABITAT RESTORATION GRANTS – $499,532 TOTAL FUNDING

Elkhorn Creek Forest Restoration, $75,584 grant to The Nature Conservancy (TNC) in partnership with the Elkhorn Creek Forest Health Initiative

Jones Park Bear Creek Greenback Cutthroat Trout Habitat Restoration Project, $75,000 grant to El Paso County

Las Colonias Park Riparian Restoration, $29,400 grant to the City of Grand Junction

North St. Vrain Creek Restoration in Button Rock Preserve, $60,000 grant to the City of Longmont

Poudre River and Floodplain Habitat Restoration at Kingfisher Point, $100,000 grant to the City of Fort Collins

Prewitt Wetlands Enhancement, $109,658 grant to Colorado Open Lands in partnership with Ducks Unlimited

Rio Grande State Wildlife Area Restoration and Protection Project: Phase 1, $25,000 grant to Colorado Parks and Wildlife

Swift Ponds Russian Olive Removal and Noxious Weed Eradication, $24,890 grant to Colorado Open Lands in partnership with Colorado Youth Outdoors

INSPIRE INITIATIVE – $13.5 MILLION TOTAL FUNDING

Get Outdoors Leadville, $3 million grant to Lake County

Nature Kids/Jovenes de la Naturaleza, $2.8 million grant to the City of Lafayette

My Outdoor Colorado, $2.7 million grant to the City and County of Denver

Go Wild NE Metro, $2.7 million grant to the cities of Aurora, Commerce City, and the City and County of Denver

Inspire Lamar, $1.3 million grant to the City of Lamar

San Luis Valley Inspire, $1 million grant to the towns of Antonito, Crestone, and Saguache

OPEN SPACE GRANTS – $6.6 MILLION TOTAL FUNDING

Baker’s Peak Ranch Conservation Easement Project, $625,000 to Colorado Open Lands in partnership with Colorado Parks and Wildlife

Doig Homestead Open Space, $675,000 grant to Summit County

Farmland Acquisition, $487,690 grant to the City of Brighton (partial award)

Johnson Ranch – Glade Park, $308,500 grant to Mesa Land Trust

La Garita Creek Ranch Conservation Easement, $376,500 grant to Rio Grande Headwaters Land Trust (RiGHT)

Maverick Ranch, $1,056,000 grant to The Trust for Public Land (TPL)

North Floyd Hill, $545,000 grant to The Trust for Public Land (TPL), in partnership with Mountain Area Land Trust (MALT)

Poudre Valley Community Farms: A Pilot Project for Community Investment in Local Food, $639,750 grant to Colorado Open Lands (COL)

Sunfire Ranch, $1 million grant to Pitkin County

The Nature Center at Butler Corner, $264,560 grant to Montezuma Land Conservancy

Yust Ranch, $697,000 grant to The Conservation Fund

PROTECT INITIATIVE – $10.7 MILLION TOTAL FUNDING

Agate Prairie Conservation Legacy, $2.14 million grant to Colorado Cattlemen’s Agricultural Land Trust in partnership with The Trust for Public Land and The Nature Conservancy

Buckley Air Force Base (AFB) Compatible Use Buffer, $3 million grant to The Trust for Public Land in partnership with the City of Aurora and Arapahoe County

Southeast Colorado Prairie Canyonlands Conservation Project, $2.647 million grant to Colorado Cattlemen’s Agricultural Land Trust in partnership with The Nature Conservancy

Willow Bay Acquisition, $3 million grant to Adams County

TRANSACTION COSTS – $274,068 TOTAL FUNDING

Badger Creek Conservation Easement, $39,800 grant to Central Colorado Conservancy (CCC), formerly Land Trust of the Upper Arkansas (LTUA)

Barr Farm Conservation Easement, $27,500 grant to Colorado Open Lands (COL)

McLeod Conservation Easement, $39,000 grant to Mesa Land Trust (MLT)

Menoken Farm Conservation Easement, $47,600 grant to Mesa Land Trust (MLT)

Ranch on the Uncompahgre River, $38,700 grant to Gunnison Ranchland Conservation Legacy (GRCL) in partnership with Colorado Open Lands (COL)

Ranch on the Yampa River, $31,468 grant to Colorado Open Lands (COL)

Schultz Elk & Cattle Ranch, $50,000 grant to Montezuma Land Conservancy (MLC)

YOUTH CORPS GRANTS – $436,800 TOTAL FUNDING

Baxter Gulch Trail and Crested Butte Open Space Stewardship, $25,200 to the Town of Crested Butte

Black Forest Area Trails and Forest Restoration, $45,000 to El Paso County

Cerise Park Open Space Invasive Weed Management, $13,800 to the City of Montrose

City of Greeley Natural Area Improvement, $41,700 to the City of Greeley

Duckett Creek Ranch Fire Mitigation and Wildlife Habitat Enhancement, $22,500 to San Isabel Land Protection Trust

Hermit Park Open Space New Trail Construction, $40,200 to Larimer County Dept. of Natural Resources

Intemann Trail Fire Mitigation Project, $30,000 to City of Manitou Springs

John Griffin Regional Park Tamarisk and Russian Olive Abatement, $30,000 to Canon City Area Rec and Park District

Las Colonias Park Riparian Area, $17,550 to the City of Grand Junction

Montezuma School to Farm Manaugh Garden Project and Ohana Kuleana Community Garden, $25,200 to the City of Cortez

Phantom Canyon Preserve River Trail, $37,800 to The Nature Conservancy (TNC)

Spring Creek Park Maintenance and Mitigation, $26,400 to the Town of Brookside

Spring Creek Trail Restoration, $12,150 to the City of Steamboat Springs

Swallowtail and Ringtail Trail Corridor, $27,600 grant to Douglas County Open Space

Swift Ponds Russian Olive Removal and Noxious Weed Management, $41,700 to Colorado Open Lands (COL)

Great Outdoors Colorado (GOCO) invests a portion of Colorado Lottery proceeds to help preserve and enhance the state’s parks, trails, wildlife, rivers, and open spaces. GOCO’s independent board awards competitive grants to local governments and land trusts, and makes investments through Colorado Parks and Wildlife. Created when voters approved a Constitutional Amendment in 1992, GOCO has since funded more than 4,700 projects in urban and rural areas in all 64 counties without any tax dollar support. Visit GOCO.org for more information.

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