Public Lands

Southwest Colorado All Lands Project

National Forest Foundation
A mountain range at sunset

SE Group partnered with the National Forest Foundation (NFF) on a two-year project focusing on the lands in and surrounding the Columbine Ranger District of the San Juan National Forest located in Southwestern Colorado. SE Group collected and analyzed recreation and outdoor business data from throughout the ranger district, City of Durango and surrounding areas, and the Bureau of Land Management area surrounding Silverton, Colorado. Stakeholders from the NFF, Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade (OEDIT), US Forest Service (USFS), and the City of Durango helped guide our work. Our team also engaged the Chamber of Commerce, Southern Ute Indian Tribe, OEDIT Region 9 office, and other community leaders. 

An aerial view of a town

The team created an interactive map documenting both recreation opportunities, outdoor recreation businesses, and analysis of those facilities; a socio-economic report on the southwest Colorado region with respect to its outdoor recreation economy; and a set of case studies on comparable communities that are grappling with the same issues as the Columbine Ranger District Region. A second round of stakeholder outreach created a list of key projects aimed at enhancing the existing recreation amenities, bolstering the outdoor economy, and protecting sensitive wildlife areas and cultural resources.