Bowmont Park is one of the city’s most significant Natural Environment Parks. The 165-hectare park with its unique mix of native prairie and riverine cottonwood forest is unlike any other park in the city, one of our largest natural areas and a vital source of habitat for wildlife.
In 2004, Council approved the Bowmont Park Management Plan, which was designed to protect areas of high environmental significance, while ensuring sustainable public access, safety and use.
The Management Plan Improvement Project
Over the past 10 years, a number of policies and practices have changed, and recent events have occurred, prompting the need for a review of the park’s current management practices, resource protection and land-use strategies:
- The acquisition of Bowmont East (formally known as the Klippert property) into the park
- The development of the Bowmont East Gate Park Design Development Plan
- The incorporation of storm water management into the park as part of the newly acquired lands and in the western portion along the 85th Street Bridge
- River bank/riparian erosion due to flooding and foot/dog traffic
- Off Leash Areas –new Off Leash Management Plan guidelines were developed in 2010
- Damage to vegetation and fragmentation of habitat caused by the proliferation of informal trails
A Natural Environment Park is predominantly natural in character and is set aside for the protection of natural habitats. Recreational use is encouraged but must be done in a manner that protects the natural integrity of the park.
2015 Public Engagement
Phase II: September – October, 2015
The second phase of this project focuses on the topic that received the most attention and interest in our first phase of engagement: Off-Leash Area (OLA) usage and boundaries. A large majority of feedback indicated that you were interested in having a say on how Bowmont Park’s Management plan would address OLAs and help improve park experience for all users while minimizing conflict and enhancing/protecting the natural areas and diversity.
Read: Final What We Heard Report based on what we heard from the public engagement events and feedback for the Bowmont Natural Environment Park Management Plan Update.
Next Steps: Management plan recommendations will be compiled and go for approval to Parks' management for review in 2016. Thank you for your time and input!
Phase I: May – July, 2015
The first phase of this project is engaging with stakeholders to see what their park experience is, what they’d change and what they envision long-term for Bowmont.
A number of engagement sessions and public participation activities have taken place in the past, including topics such as new off-leash boundaries, playground improvement options, new river access points, the design process for the former Klippert gravel pit and riverbank stabilization work.
This 2015 management plan update aims to address those factors and challenges in a holistic and complete manner, intended to consolidate what we’ve heard in the past and what we’re hearing now, and provide long-term improvements to how Bowmont is managed for the enjoyment of all Calgarians and the preservation of a sensitive natural area.