Skyline Regional Park
In December 2010, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and the City of Buckeye signed a 25-year, no-cost lease agreement for 8,675 acres of land in the south White Tank Mountains for Skyline Regional Park. The future park is located north of I-10 off of Watson Road and south of the County's White Tank Mountain Regional Park. The City will construct improvements on the land and open it as a regional park and BLM will allow the City to acquire the land at no cost at the end of the lease.
Skyline Park will become the centerpiece of open space in the City’s municipal planning area. Other municipalities have spent millions of taxpayer dollars acquiring open space to protect and preserve it for future generations. Buckeye is fortunate to be able to acquire the 8,675 acres of land at no cost to the residents.
With the lease agreement approved, the City began the development of a master plan to further define the improvements to be constructed in the park over the course of the 25-year lease. City council appointed seven members from the public to work with staff to develop the master plan for Skyline Park, which was approved by Council in September 2012.
Click below for the Skyline Regional Park Master Plan
Skyline Regional Park Master Plan
The City is now under contract for the design of Phase I improvements, which includes the access road (extending Watson Road 3/4 of a mile north from McDowell Road to the park entrance), interior park roads, gatehouse entry station, parking, programming area, restroom facility, picnic ramadas, camping sites, and a bridge crossing a wash to connect the improvements to existing trails. The City anticipates the design to be complete in fall 2014 with construction beginning by the end of 2014. Concurrent to the design, the City is also working with the Arizona State Land Department to acquire the right-of-way on Watson Road for legal access to the park.
The 8,675 acres is home to varied natural and cultural resources that the public will be able to appreciate and enjoy. There are amazing views from the top of the mountain ridges in Skyline Park overlooking the valley floor towards downtown Phoenix and south towards the Gila River. The park will offer west valley residents opportunities for hiking, mountain biking, horseback riding, and other passive recreation activities such as wildlife viewing and camping. New programs will be offered for families to enjoy including stargazing, fitness hikes and informative programs on the many natural and cultural resources found in the park.
In anticipation of the park opening, the City began a campaign to end the illegal shooting and dumping that had been occurring in an area south of the future park entrance known locally as Shotgun Alley. Working with the Arizona State Land Department, the City held two cleanups in December 2013 and March 2014 with 1,400 volunteer hours contributed and over 68,000 pounds of trash removed. These cleanups have helped to restore the area back to its pristine desert foothills setting. Police officers have been stationed along Watson Road to enforce the no target shooting and dumping and are encouraging the target shooters to use the Joe Foss Public Shooting Range in the Buckeye Hills Regional Park located at 26700 W. Buckeye Hills Drive off of State Route 85.
Opening in Mid-2015
Skyline Park is expected to open in mid-2015 and we invite you to join us to experience all the park has to offer. Join us on a hike, explore the plants and animals in the park, enjoy the amazing views from the top of the ridges, and take in the beauty as the sun sets over the mountain skyline.
Presentation from 2nd Public Meeting (click on image below to access presentation as a pdf file).