The Historic Arkansas Riverwalk of Pueblo (HARP) is a 32 acre urban waterfront experience open to the public daily. The Riverwalk returned the river to its historic location in the heart of downtown Pueblo, after being diverted in the 1920s due to a devastating flood that destroyed much of Pueblo. The Riverwalk’s current location serves the community by revitalizing a segment of the downtown area that was previously unsightly and unusable. This urban development transforms the community and has been vital in attracting new businesses, thereby helping to stabilize the economic base of the city.
The Arkansas River has been the lifeblood of Pueblo for over 300 years. Native Americans followed the river for hunting and trapping. Early settlers came as sheepherders and cattlemen. Agriculture blossomed in Pueblo’s warmer climate and the steel industry used the bountiful water resources to build a massive manufacturing center. Four nations have claimed ownership over the Arkansas River at the current location of the Riverwalk; Mexico, Spain, France and the Republic of Texas.
The Historic Arkansas Riverwalk’s three major programs are as follows:
- Expansion of the current Riverwalk to complete the original plan as presented to the citizens of Pueblo in 1995.
- Provide an economic catalyst to the community of Pueblo and to southeastern Colorado through the development of commercial opportunities that provides incentive for corporate relocation and job creation.
- Continue to evolve as a premier heritage tourism destination through educational programming, cultural events, and community activities.