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The Evolution of Painted Prairie’s Parks

Published
May 30, 2024

Before a shovel was turned, the developers of Painted Prairie stood at its highest natural point and began to take in the view that the early pioneers had when they first settled on the very same prairie. At that point, the vision came into focus for a spectacular park (later aptly named High Prairie Park) and a connected system of green spaces, outdoor living places, and natural playscapes that would weave its way throughout our community.

Our Parks Come First – Literally

At Painted Prairie, our parks and gardens are our number one amenity – we even won a national Best Landscape Award! The park system was (and is) so important that before any houses were built, we ensured our very first residents were able to access and take advantage of our parks instead of waiting after they moved in. To this day, we’re continually adding and evolving our parks to create new experiences and new places to plant, play, and ponder throughout the day as the community grows.

Back in 2020, our first park – High Prairie Park – was planted. This 22-acre park stretches across the heart of Painted Prairie and is an open-air masterpiece filled with gathering spots, playgrounds, art installations, gardens, and green expanses that flow across the natural rise and fall of the prairie. Providing great play places such as our Lincoln Logs, The Outpost, our whimsical Fort, Adventure Run, and gathering places like the Crimson Pavilions and BBQs, and the Beach – High Prairie Park inspires adventure, exploration, and connection for residents and visitors.

Places to Set Down Roots

Painted Prairie’s community garden system was thoughtfully designed to create connections with the land and the neighbors that call our community home. Sprinkled along linear parks such as The Greenway and tucked into sunny corners just outside front doors, our community gardens give residents a place to gather and literally set down roots each growing season.

Rooted in Prairie Traditions

While designing our parks, we set out to create places that honored not only the land, but the people who first settled the landscape. Drawing inspiration from Harvey Dunn’s, The Prairie is My Garden, a stunning painting of an early homesteading woman standing proud, strong and mighty with her children on the prairie backdrop. She reminds us of the fortitude required to live here before the great industrial revolution tamed the land and its waters. The colors and textures of the plants, the breeze, and the electric sky are all elements we have tried to capture and enhance for people to discover in the neighborhood park.

Pocketful of Parks

Wherever you are in our community, chances are you’re never too far away from an adventure. Nine engaging pocket parks are woven through our community offering respite and gathering spots for neighbors and friends. Our park system is interconnected by a series of open space tracts, garden courts, and tree-lined walks. This ribbon of trails provides accessible paths large enough for bikes, skates, and wheelchairs for easy access to everything Painted Prairie has to offer.

More Parks on the Horizon

The Park at Town Center will be the heart of an urban landscape – a town square surrounded by residential and commercial spaces. Indulge in tasty fare, get your caffeine fix at the local coffee shop, enjoy live music and movies in the open space, or bring a picnic basket to settle in for a leisurely snack – the Park at Town Center will have everything you need to enjoy the Urban Prairie. The Park at Town Center and Rose and Violet Parks – two new neighborhood parks – are currently under construction and are expected to be completed later this year.

In the future, Pioneer Park will be your go-to place for sports fields, a potential public school site, and more than 17 acres of room to gather and play. Perfect for family gatherings, picnics, and school events, the park will be located within an easy bike or walk off Picadilly Trail. The park is slated for future development.

History will come alive at the future Prairie Retreat Park. Bigger than High Prairie Park and packed with history, this new park will be located on the final headgate of the historic 71-mile Highline Canal. The park will offer multiple recreational and educational spaces for residents and visitors and serve as the gateway to local regional trails, the Cottonwood Grove Picnic Area, and historical points of interest throughout its 35 acres. Prairie Retreat Park is also slated for future development as our community grows.

Want to learn more about our parks? Check out our parks brochure here. Want to stay in the loop on all things Painted Prairie? Sign up for our newsletter to get monthly updates delivered to your inbox.

Resident Testimonials

Johann Duran

Once we heard of Painted Prairie in 2021, we were hooked! We loved the diversity of the community, the open space, and everything else it has to offer. Our house has very rapidly turned into a home. We actually met some of our closest friends at a Painted Prairie event.

Jacci Cradle

Painted Prairie has become a place that feels like home for my family because of the strong sense of community and the diverse and inclusive atmosphere. It’s a place where we can connect with neighbors, support local businesses, and truly feel like we belong. The shared values of unity, diversity, and sustainability in the community align with what our family holds dear. It’s a place where children can thrive, and we can contribute positively to the community.

Gabriele Dos Santos

Being an active community while bringing us together on the different events throughout the year. We have been fortunate to enjoy the farmers markets, the neighborhood BBQ, the pancake breakfast, the family painting class, movies at the park and the Fall Festival! Our son and dog also love all the parks!

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