CSU Lagoon panorama
CSU Lagoon on campus. PHOTO: Joe A. Mendoza, CSU Photography

Originally a gift from alumni Mr. and Mrs. Raymond H. Miller, the iconic Lagoon west of the Lory Student Center was built in 1963. After the Spring Creek flood in 1997, the Lagoon became an important part of the stormwater and flood mitigation system for campus and Fort Collins. By 2017, it required an upgrade to accommodate runoff from new buildings and sidewalks on Main Campus, and Facilities Management went to work on a plan to revitalize the Lagoon for only the second time in its nearly 60-year history.

The results were unveiled in 2020. Visitors now enjoy a smaller Lagoon surrounded by a gravel trail, native grasses, and comfortable seating. They don’t notice the forebay that removes pollutants from runoff, or the extensive engineering that reduces the risk of flooding. But they can’t miss the full-size memorial to campus water levels – up to 13 feet – during historic floods of the 20th century. 

Jessica Kramer and President Joyce McConnell admire the new Lagoon in November 2021. Revitalization team: David Hansen and Fred Haberecht, landscape architects; Susanne Cordery, environmental engineer; Rodney Gillespie, manager of outdoor services, and Tony Flores, project manager, CSU Facilities Management

Lagoon On Campus

Memorial designer Jessica Kramer, right, and President Joyce McConnell admire the new Lagoon in November 2021. PHOTO: Joe A. Mendoza