Trinidad River Walk Meetings
In December 2016, Purgatoire Watershed Partnership (PWP) in partnership with the Arkansas Basin Roundtable (ABRT) convened a group of diverse stakeholders to determine management priorities for a 4.5 mile stretch of the Purgatoire River as it flows from Trinidad Dam and through the City of Trinidad. This stretch of the river contains important value for recreation, agricultural uses, property developers, rural economic development, and wildlife habitat. With these values in mind, PWP and ABRT invited as many stakeholders to the group meetings as possible to reflect the community of interests that rely upon the river.
Through these meetings, the working group came up with six management priorities:
1. Minimize flood risks through river modifications
2. Restoration of riparian and aquatic habitat
3. Improved recreational opportunities
4. Education, safety, and security (headgates, jetty jacks)
5. Management of winter flow releases
6. Preservation of water rights and agricultural heritage
To achieve these six priorities, PWP recognized the need to: 1.) Develop its own capacity to manage projects by improving governance and hiring a coordinator, 2.) Build a better scientific foundation to inform management priorities, and 3.) Create a long-term management plan for the Purgatoire River. The River Walk stakeholder group is currently conducting scientific studies to analyze the hydrology and geomorphology of the river.