JOIN US THIS SATURDAY! We Are Nearing Completion of Rio Fernando Park Master Plan!!

JOIN US THIS SATURDAY! We Are Nearing Completion of Rio Fernando Park Master Plan!!

We are finishing up a year-long master planning process for the 20-acre Rio Fernando Park in the center of Taos and invites all community members to see the final draft design plan on August 18. Taos artists will be on hand to help build giant, fun landscape art nests! Kid friendly snacks provided!

On Saturday, August 18, 2018 from 1-3pm the we will host yet another free community event at Rio Fernando Park, located adjacent to Fred Baca Park. This time the land trust will reveal the near final draft master plan for the park.

Community. Public. That means YOU.

In October 2016, the we kicked off a year-long public outreach effort to gain input from the Taos community on the development for a master plan for Rio Fernando Park. As you know, we already protect thousands of acres of agricultural, scenic open space, water and agricultural land across northern New Mexico through conservation easements, hosted numerous public events at the future public park and in various other locations around town.

The future Rio Fernando Park is a 20-acre parcel owned by the Taos Land Trust. Located one mile from the center of downtown, the property contains 7-acres of wetlands that hug the Rio Fernando de Taos. This wetland connects to a broader wetland, spilling out into the adjacent Fred Baca public park and downstream to the Rio Pueblo that feeds the Rio Grande. The remainder of the property has approximately 13 acres of urban forest and land once used for agriculture and ranching.

“The Rio Fernando Park will be an evolving space over the years, but to make this park truly serve our whole community, we want feedback on the Master Plan,” says Juniper Manley of the Taos Land Trust. “We have invited the public to be part of the planning process over the last year, and the free event on August 18th is an opportunity to see the culmination of this input and you can help us as we put the finishing touches on the Master Plan.”

Working with New Mexico experts, the land trust plan incorporates wetland restoration, public park space, educational resources and agricultural revitalization.

“This event will bring community members together to review and comment on draft of the final master plan for the park, says Amy Bell of Groundwork Studio, the team leader of the Taos Land Trust’s planning efforts. “Community input and support is central to the rehabilitation and revitalization of this property, which will provide a unique intersection of wild habitat, recreational space, and traditional agricultural heritage,”

“We see the Rio Fernando Park as a green sanctuary in the middle of Taos,” says Manley. “A place where you can take a walk with a friend, sit by the Rio Fernando, have a picnic, experience demonstrations of traditional acequia irrigation as well as old and new water conservation techniques, and celebrate values that seek to conserving the precious natural resources of our valley.”

The master planning event on August 18th will also include a fun landscape art activity. Taos-area artists will be on hand to guide participants in the construction of giant bird nests – structures for children and adults alike to enjoy into the future.

The Taos Land Trust draft final master planning event will be held Saturday, August 18, 2018 from 1-3pm at Rio Fernando Park, 410 La Posta Road, Taos, New Mexico. Call 575.751.3138 for more information.

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Jim O'Donnell

Jim was born and raised in southern Colorado. He obtained both a BA in Anthropology and a Masters in Community and Regional Planning from the University of New Mexico. After ten years as an archaeologist and Jim served as the lead organizer for the Coalition for the Valle Vidal and after as the Northern Director for the New Mexico Wilderness Alliance. Today Jim works part time as a freelance journalist, conservation photographer and our communications lead. He is the author of “Notes for the Aurora Society” and leads yearly photography workshops to Havana, Cuba.