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Public Scoping for Desert View Inter-tribal Cultural Heritage Site Plan / Environmental Assessment

Located at the southeast edge of Grand Canyon National Park, Desert View functions as the east entrance to the park and provides many visitors with their first introduction and orientation to some of the park's most significant resources - including the Desert View Watchtower (a National Historic Landmark) and its surrounding historic district as well as spectacular views of the Painted Desert and the Little Colorado River gorge. The area also serves as the first stop for information, restrooms, water, food, souvenirs, and gasoline to visitors entering the park from the east along Arizona Route 64 and provides convenient access to some of the neighboring tribal lands.

Given the significance of the site, its infrastructure, and proximity to neighboring tribal lands, the NPS is proposing to transform Desert View from a traditional scenic overlook and visitor services area into an Inter-tribal Cultural Heritage Site that provides opportunities for first-voice cultural interpretation from associated American Indian Tribes - including cultural demonstrations - and enhances visitor orientation to both the cultural significance of the site and greater park, as well as information about tourism opportunities on surrounding tribal lands.

To accomplish these goals, the National Park Service (NPS) is proposing some modifications to existing infrastructure (such as restriping parking lots), some demolition (and potential reuse) of underutilized facilities (such as the existing visitor center, shade structures and some walkways), as well as some potential new construction (such as expansion of existing amphitheater and construction of new restrooms, or new cultural center) within the existing developed footprint at Desert View.

Public Scoping on the proposed action is currently underway for this planning effort, and public comments on the proposed action will be accepted for 30 days (closing March 6, 2018). During this time, any individual or group can submit scoping comments electronically on this website (see "Open for Comment" on the left banner), in person at public scoping open house events/webinars (see "Meeting Notices" on the left banner), or via mail to Superintendent, Grand Canyon National Park, Attn: Desert View EA, PO Box 129, Grand Canyon, AZ 86023. The preferred method for submitting comments is though this website.

Comments that provide insights about the project purpose and the park's current proposal are particularly helpful, and new ideas and proposals are welcome. Following the public comment period, the NPS will analyze and consider all feedback and begin preparation of the EA.

The NPS will not select an alternative for implementation until after the analysis of the alternatives and their potential impacts has been completed within the EA. There will be a second opportunity for public comment on the EA in fall/winter 2018.
Comment Period: Closed        Feb 5, 2018 - Mar 6, 2018
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