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Open Space Symposium
2014 Regional Open Space Symposium

Thank you for attending the 2014 Regional Open Space Symposium! The Symposium generated a lot of feedback and ideas for future open space efforts in the Flagstaff region. Thank you for your attendance and contributions.

A large portion of the Symposium was concentrated on discussing different visions of what the Rio de Flag could be for the Flagstaff community.  Within those discussions, a few overarching themes emerged that we wanted to bring to your attention.

·         Overall, participants are frustrated by the current status of the Rio de Flag and would prefer for the Rio to be a focal point of the community, providing many outdoor and educational opportunities.

·         The Rio should provide connections between existing parks and Flagstaff urban trail segments.

·         Any restoration or development designs for the Rio should be as natural as possible and utilize river restoration practices that create a desirable amenity for people and wildlife.

·         The Rio should be an opportunity for economic benefits to the community.

Participants also discussed the Open Space Master Plan and made many suggestions about the criteria and Priority Areas included in the Plan. Suggestions included:

·         The economic value of proposed Open Space parcels should be emphasized.

·         Limiting urban sprawl and containing development should be included in the Plan’s criteria.

·         Priorities for Open Space include: Rio de Flag, McMillan Mesa, parcels surrounding Little America, wildlife corridors, endangered species habitat areas, and connections between existing parks.

Additionally, we brainstormed ways to move forward to acquire new Open Spaces and funding for their operation and maintenance. Below is a sample of the many great ideas generated through this discussion.

·         Coordinate with local Forest Service volunteer network to complete backlog of operation and maintenance activities.

·         Present to incoming City Council members about the current status of the Rio de Flag and Natural Areas, lack of operation and maintenance funding, and why Open Space is important to the community.

·         Coordinate between City and County departments to ensure they are working toward a common goal and working together when possible.

·         Provide benefits to landowners that donate conservation easements through their land.

2015 Regional Open Space Symposium
City of Flagstaff staff and partners are currently planning for a Symposium in Spring 2016. Stay tuned for updates!