Boulder ditch history

Many Colorado cities grew outward from the early irrigation ditch systems. Boulder is no different. Here’s a report from Mike Ellis writing for the Boulder Daily Camera. From the article:

True, ditches are like my grandfather’s shovel — the handle’s been replaced seven times and the blade four times — but they’re still 150 years old. The ditches may have been re-dug and repaired many times, but they are the same ditches. The first shovel was turned on the oldest, Smith-Goss ditch, in 1859, the same year the city of Boulder was founded. Today, Smith-Goss still runs through Naropa University and waters the fields at Boulder High…

Local government has generally agreed that irrigation ditches are an asset to the community. The Boulder Valley Comprehensive Plan, a joint agreement between the city and county of Boulder, calls for preserving historical ditches, protecting ditches from adjacent development, and supporting the neighborhood-building aspect of ditches…

“The Ditch Project – 150 Years of Ditches: Boulder’s Constructed Landscape” will be featured at the Boulder Public Library, the Dairy Center, and Central Park through July 8, with presentations, films, story telling, sculpture, tours, and more. The opening reception is May 15, and an all-day Ditch Symposium will be held May 16. All exhibits and events are free and open to the public. For information see ditchproject.org.

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