With the National Park System’s (NPS) centennial anniversary approaching in August, President Barack Obama has proposed spending more than $1 billion restoring the parks. Unfortunately, that won’t come close to covering the $12 billion needed to pay for NPS’ deferred maintenance (DM) nationwide.
“Deferred maintenance is necessary work performed on infrastructure—such as roads, bridges, visitor centers, trails, and campgrounds—that has been delayed for more than one year,” says NPS Public Affairs Specialist Vanessa Lacayo. And within that $12 billion, there’s a more serious classification called Critical Systems Deferred Maintenance (CSDM), which are the updates needed for the parks to effectively function.
Colorado ranks 18th in the country in total value of its DM and 11th in CSDM (with more than $40 million, according to the NPS). Below are the numbers released for a few of Colorado’s parks, as well as some ways you can help lower the totals. Time to get our hands dirty.
Rocky Mountain National Park
Get Involved: Volunteer individually or in a group.
Mesa Verde National Park
Colorado National Monument
Curecanti National Recreation Area
Great Sand Dunes National Monument and Preserve
Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park