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Phoenix's Echo Canyon on Camelback Mountain will reopen at sunrise on Jan. 15, according to the city's parks and recreation department.

After being closed for nearly a year, the renovated area will feature increased parking, a permanent restroom and a rerouted trail to eliminate badly warn sections. Other additions include a shade ramada and chilled water fountains, improved traffic flow through entrances and 15 new bike racks.

The project, funded through the Phoenix Parks and Preserve Initiative, has cost $4.34 million to date.

"Echo Canyon hiking is back and better than ever for valley residents and visitors who love to hike through and view our beautiful desert and mountain landscape," Mayor Greg Stanton said in a press release. "Attractions like this make our city a great place to live, visit and a great example of the value of preserving heritage and nature."

Echo Canyon will be hiker-only for the first six months because of pent-up demand and expected large crowds.

"The city invested over $4 million on improvements and renovations for the park," Councilman Sal DiCiccio said. "These renovations were critical for the preservation of Camelback Mountain. We've pushed this for a very long time and it's great we were able to get it done."

KTAR Newsroom,

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