River Run Park: Near Denver, CO
RESTORE, RECONNECT, PROTECT
River Run Park on the South Platte River is a unique urban river park that has restored a river to provide recreation, connectivity to neighboring communities, and flood protection. Full park amenities are plentiful: a new mile of developed walking, running and biking trail space, a restroom, playground, shelter for events, parking, access trails, terraced seating and viewing areas. Improvements in the river include aquatic habitat structures, restoration of the river channel, revegetation, upgrades to an existing diversion intake, and whitewater waves.
“The grade control structures in the river are the most important design elements from our perspective, because they provide the long term stability… we were very pleased to partner with the other agencies so they could also serve a dual purpose for high end recreation…A project of this magnitude doesn’t happen without an amazing group of partners. The vision was shaped by McLaughlin Whitewater Design Group (Merrick and Company) especially Ben Nielsen and Rick McLaughlin.
- Laura Kroeger, P.E., Assistant Program Manager, Urban Drainage and Flood Control District)
One-half mile of river restoration includes:
- A low flow channel
- Habitat structures that support fish passage
- Re-vegetation of aquatic, riparian, and upland areas
- Six wave features
- World-class low flow surf wave at 175 cfs w/ MWDG patented Wave Shaper™ adjustable wave technology
“Best surf wave in Colorado, hands down.” – Alex Mauer Team Rider BIC SUP
Riversides improvements include river access trails, put-ins, take-outs, cobble bars,and terraced boulder viewing areas
After a major flood devastated the Denver Metro Area in 1965, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers built three flood control reservoirs and channel improvements. MWDG worked closely with the Corps to gain approval for River Run Park, which was extremely difficult to do because a project like this had never been proposed in a Corps flood protection project before. All river structures were designed to the Corps 100-year flood criteria.