Nearly two months ago, Denver City Councilman Chris Nevitt called for alcohol to be prohibited Washington Park due to what he described as "belligerent drunken behavior." In the end, city council opted against a ban, meaning that while the hard stuff is still nixed, consuming 3.2 beer remains okay.
So how is Denver Parks and Recreation addressing Nevitt's concerns? Through a slew of just-announced measures, including two full-time park rangers working the park on weekends, volunteer "courtesy patrols" and more. Look below to see the changes that go into effect on Memorial Day weekend, supplemented for the full list of rules and regs for Denver parks as a whole.
Denver Parks and Rec's intro to the latest rules reads like so: "In an effort to address the increased use of Washington Park, Denver Parks and Recreation (DPR) has committed to a variety of measures aimed to protect one of Denver's much-treasured urban parks. The goals of these measures are to help DPR better manage the park's natural resources, allow for a wider variety of uses in the park and lessen the impact on surrounding neighborhoods."
Denver Parks and Recreation (DPR) will manage the implementation of the following changes, which begin Memorial Day Weekend 2014. Ongoing monitoring and periodic consultation with park neighbors and patrons will be used to assess the effectiveness of the changes and make any necessary adjustments or implement additional measures:
• Drop-in permit system for organized activities on weekends and holidays.
• Increased servicing of existing portable bathrooms and availability of plumbed bathrooms for additional hours, including after-hours for Washington Park Recreation Center bathrooms.
• Direct park visitors to the availability of free parking in the South High School parking lot.
• Placement of permanent and moveable signage around the park to remind park users and visitors that only 3.2 percent beer, and no liquor or glass, is allowed in the park.
Continue for more of the new rules and regulations launching this weekend at Washington Park. New measures, continued:
• Increased right-of-way enforcement in the adjacent neighborhoods to ticket vehicles illegally parked in driveways or in handicapped spaces.
• With signage and volunteers in place, Denver Park Rangers will view rule violations, including alcohol violations, with less tolerance and issue more citations for violations.
• Increased Park Ranger patrol; deploy two full-time rangers in Washington Park on weekends.
• Deployment of DPD Mounted Patrol on high-traffic weekend days and holidays; ramped up DPD general enforcement for the park area on all weekends and holidays.
• Reinforced DPR education and enforcement efforts with volunteer from neighbors and patrons, through independent social media and "courtesy patrols" in the park and surrounding neighborhoods.
Here's the complete list of rules and regulations for Denver parks.
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Send your story tips to the author, Michael Roberts.