The most famous park in the United States, the Grand Canyon, is one of the most beautiful landscapes in the world. It’s located in Arizona and has been a national park for 95 years.
Now, developers are planning to make some changes, which could be a threat to the Grand Canyon National Park’s future. What exactly are they developing?
There are two developing serious threats to the view across from the Grand Canyon. They will be man-made changes, which could endanger the water supply, the ecology and the park’s vistas.
Development in Tusayan
One of the planned developments is found in the town of Tusayan. This town wants to add 2,200 new homes and commercial space of around 3 million square feet. This development has already been approved and it’s going to affect the pressure on the water supply and ecology of the Grand Canyon’s plateau on the South Rim. Being so close the Grand Canyon, this huge development is going to massively affect the visitor’s experience of the park.
Neighboring area development
Another threat in the works is in an area that neighbors the Grand Canyon National Park. The intention is to add a commercial area with a restaurant, hotel, retail and a gondola to transport people from the Grand Canyon to the restaurant and hotel. It will cover around 420 acres of space on Navajo Indian land. This would take away from the natural beauty of the park and make it more commercialized.
Currently, the Canyon sees 5,000,000 visitors every year. Most people visit the South Rim because of the large rock walls and canyon. The gondola is going to allow visitors to see the canyon floor which is a bit rare.
Currently, visitors can take one of the helicopter tours or enjoy the Skyway attraction from the Hualapai tribe to see the canyon floor. The Skyway is a glass walkway protruding past the cliff walls and allowing for some incredible views. However, people are hardly getting to see the ground level today because it’s only accessible by mule or an extremely experienced hiker capable of handling the long path.
While the changes would allow for more visitor opportunities, places to stay near it and easier access to the Canyon, the man-made changes may affect the natural beauty of the Grand Canyon National Park. The developers and park representatives are in disagreement over what is best for the park.
Photo by Purple