State park closed because of rats is open again

“It’s returned to a stable and safe environment.”

Denver Police Sergeant Brian Conover said his wife took this picture at Lincoln Memorial Park in September and later noticed a rat looking out of a hole. Jan. 15, 2020. (Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite)

Denver Police Sergeant Brian Conover said his wife took this picture at Lincoln Memorial Park in September and later noticed a rat looking out of a hole. Jan. 15, 2020. (Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite)

Donna Bryson. (Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite)

The state park west of the Capitol was reopened Thursday following a seven-week cleanup launched because of concerns about rats.

“It’s returned to a stable and safe environment,” said Tammy Vigil, spokeswoman for Denver’s Department of Public Health & Environment.

The health department had cited rats and health risks to people in the park when it closed Lincoln Memorial Park between the Capitol and Civic Center Park on Jan. 15.

Just over two weeks before the closure, a local judge had ruled that Denver’s urban camping ban was unconstitutional. The city appealed the judge’s ruling but temporarily suspended enforcement of the ban. During the brief suspension of enforcement, tents had popped up near Lincoln Park.

The state’s Department of Personnel and Administration undertook the cleanup under the supervision of Denver’s health department.

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