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Picture grasslands carpeted with wildflowers, the cool shade of creek side cottonwoods, the play of sun and clouds across the foothills, the smell of a pine forest after a thunderstorm, rock formations stretching to the sky, and hillsides covered in fall colors. These are examples of the natural beauty to be found within our City's Open Space areas.

Parks, Recreation & Cultural Services cares for approximately 12,000 acres of diverse open space. Abundant opportunities for recreation and observing nature are preserved for your enjoyment today and for future generations tomorrow.

Trails Open Space and Parks Program 

Many of the open spaces in Colorado Springs were purchased thanks to the Trails, Open Space and Parks (TOPS) sales tax program. The TOPS tax of one-tenth of one percent (0.10%) was established by a vote of the people in 1997 to encourage, foster and promote public-private partnerships in the preservation of open space lands, trails and parks. Without the TOPS program some of the most beloved parks, trails and open spaces in Colorado Springs would not exist. Since TOPS was first approved by voters in 1997, over 7,500 acres of open space has been acquired, 67 parks have been built or improved, and more than 53 miles of trail have been constructed with TOPS funding. In April 2023, Colorado Springs citizens voted “yes” to extend the TOPS sales and use tax with no increase to the tax until 2043.

Learn more by visiting What is TOPS?