Welcome to the
 Department of Sustainability


The Denver Public School District manages water usage for over 12 million square feet of building space and 447 acres of irrigated land. DPS Sustainability Staff is committed to reducing water use and conservation wherever practicable. In partnership with Denver Water, the University of Colorado Denver, and other partners, the district has taken on several projects to decrease water consumption and promote conservation.

High Efficiency Fixture Upgrades

The DPS Sustainability Team has partnered with Denver Water to replace all of the district’s older high water use fixtures in bathrooms, including toilets, sinks and water fountains, with high efficiency fixtures. As of spring 2010, completed fixture replacements have decreased district water use by 4 million gallons. In conjunction with this fixture replacement, Denver Water conducted district-wide indoor and outdoor water usage audits in every DPS building. The results of these audits will be used to implement even greater water savings district-wide. Click here to access the Final Report of the Water Analysis for Denver Public Schools.

Irrigation System and “Learning Landscape” Upgrades

The DPS Sustainability Team is working with DPS Irrigation/Plumbing staff and Denver Water to upgrade outdoor irrigation systems to more efficient fixtures. Where financially feasible, DPS staff are installing irrigation timers, rain sensors and other fixtures to more accurately control watering schedules. Additionally, the data collected by Denver Water in their indoor and outdoor water audits will be used to more accurately budget for and decrease water use across the district.

Denver Public Schools is working with Denver Water use non-potable “recycled water” for irrigation and other gray water uses. DPS will be tapping into a city recycled water line next to East High School to access this more affordable source of irrigation water.

Denver Public Schools, in conjunction with graduate students in Landscape Architecture at University of Colorado Denver, has been systematically designing and building outdoor “learning landscapes” on all of our elementary school grounds. These learning landscapes are designed to provide students with interactive play grounds that typically significantly decrease outdoor water use at each school.