Grand Canyon Maintenance Load Lightened

Published: Monday, January 21, 2019 - 5:00am
Updated: Tuesday, January 22, 2019 - 9:03am
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Laurel Morales/KJZZ
The National Park Service has a $11 billion backlog of repairs including a massive water pipeline project at the Grand Canyon.

A nonprofit associated with Grand Canyon National Park has just received half a million dollars to restore the park’s most famous trail. The grant will help alleviate some of the burden caused by the mounting maintenance backlog at the park. 

The list of repairs is long — aging facilities, leaking pipelines, eroding trails. The Grand Canyon’s maintenance backlog is more than $300 million. But visitors keep coming. More than 6 million people came in 2017. And thousands of them hiked the most popular trail — Bright Angel. 

So Gene D’Adamo, spokesman for the Nina Mason Pulliam Charitable Trust, says the $500,000 grant will go toward renovating a segment of Bright Angel Trail. 

“Our funds will help a three-mile aspect of that trail,” D’Adamo said. “It gets a lot of wear and tear between the people, the mules.” 

All together the national parks have $11 billion in deferred maintenance costs. Park officials said growing visitation and limited resources make the task of chipping away at that list incredibly difficult.

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