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Denver Museum Nature Play & Box Canyon Waterway Project Brings Colorado’s Ecosystems to Life

For more than 100 years, the Denver Museum of Nature and Science (DMNS) has been a staple of the Denver community, gathering families to learn, discover, play and engage with the natural world. Its numerous exhibits have always fostered creativity and passion in guests young and old, but nothing will compare to the natural play experience breaking ground this month. ECI is thrilled to partner with DMNS and the City and County of Denver for the Nature Play and Box Canyon Waterway project, which will bring Colorado’s ecosystems to life through a multi-sensory outdoor venue.

Ecosystems, Play Elements, and More

The 4-acre space will include numerous unique elements that will appeal to multiple generations, including swings, slides, climbing features, seating and gathering spaces, a 20-foot bighorn sheep sculpture, and accessible pathways. Additionally, the historic waterway in the southeast corner of City Park will be restored and highlight Colorado’s ecosystems through play experiences.

A Community Effort

One of the most fascinating aspects of this project is just how much the Denver community has driven its overall vision. As part of the 2018 City Park Master Planning Process, more than 800 community members were surveyed so the end result could best match the public’s needs. Feedback included the desire for accessibility, native Colorado plants, water features, and much more. Learn more about process in this short video.

Long-Lasting Impacts

With more than 1.7 million people served annually by the DMNS onsite, offsite and virtually, it goes without saying that the institute is a fundamental landmark for families in the Denver area. This new outdoor space will provide learning opportunities and gathering spaces for all ages and abilities for years to come.

Project Players

ECI is grateful for the several project partners we have the opportunity to collaborate with, including the Denver Museum of Nature and Science, City and County of Denver, and Dig Studio. The project broke ground in January 2023 and is expected to open to the public in late 2024.

Visit the DMNS website to learn more about the project and vision behind it.