/ Modified feb 16, 2018 3:42 p.m.

Park Service Wants Grand Canyon Icon to Reflect Native American Heritage

The agency is proposing transforming the Desert View Watchtower into an inter-tribal heritage site.

desert view watchtower hero The Desert View Watchtower, in the Grand Canyon. (PHOTO: AC Swedbergh, AZPM)

FLAGSTAFF — The National Park Service wants to change an iconic destination at the Grand Canyon to honor Native American heritage

Thousands of visitors flock to Desert View Watchtower each year. The 70-foot-high stone tower on the south rim of the Grand Canyon was designed by Mary Colter in 1932. She was inspired by the architecture of the ancestral Puebloans, who lived at the Grand Canyon 800 years ago. 

The park has proposed to transform the scenic overlook to an inter-tribal cultural heritage site. That would mean some demolition of underutilized facilities and potential new construction within the existing developed footprint. 

Public scoping meetings are planned for Feb. 20 and 21 in Flagstaff and Grand Canyon, respectively. 

People have until March 6 to comment. 

Fronteras Desk
This story is from the Fronteras Desk, a collaboration of Southwestern public radio stations, including NPR 89.1. Read more from the Fronteras Desk.
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