NewsFront RangeLakewood


Debate continues in Lakewood amid study proposing to add more water to Bear Creek Lake Park reservoir

updated map for lakewood water study.PNG
Posted at 5:10 PM, Oct 15, 2021
and last updated 2021-10-15 21:55:36-04

LAKEWOOD, Colo. — A sufficient water supply or a place to hike, swim and picnic?

That's a debate going on right now in Lakewood, centered around Bear Creek Lake, where thousands go everyday of the summer to enjoy the outdoors.

A years-long study conducted by the United States Army Corps of Engineers and the Colorado Water Conservation Board states the park's reservoir could be the perfect place to store even more water. After all, Colorado's drought situation has been worsening.

"I understand with more people moving in that there's a lot of pressure for water resources," Colin Pence, a visitor at the park, said.

The study proposes adding up to billions of gallons of water to the reservoir, which will consume most of the nearby land as outlined in a map presented to the public Thursday.

updated map for lakewood water study.PNG

According to the study, this may:

  • Reduce risk of future water supply shortfall.
  • Allow for storage of agricultural augmentation water in Bear Creek Reservoir for future use.
  • Improve reservoir water quality.
  • Allow for immediate capture of all available flows that may legally be stored.

But the move will certainly eliminate recreation nearby if the max level of proposed gallons is added to the reservoir, according to Lakewood Open Space Supervisor Drew Sprafke.

"There just wouldn't be acreage left in the park to replace the trail system and some of the amenities to the extent they are now," Sprafke said.

These concerns are also listed in the study, which states in part that the character of the park can significantly be impacted.

Denver7 reached out to both the Colorado Water Conservation Board and the Army Corps of Engineers for comment. Both have yet to respond to our request for comment.

It is unclear when a final decision on the study will be made.