New park could one day replace mine shafts above growing Southwest Las Vegas

Construction is booming on the Southwest side of the Las Vegas Valley.

Workers can be seen building new apartments, homes, and shopping centers. But with that growth, there are concerns over people getting too close to a dangerous problem.

Before Nevada, there was mining.

What’s left behind lies at the top of a hill near Fort Apache Road and Warm Springs Road.

Just a short hike separates curious people from abandoned mine shafts. The caves can be seen from Red Ridge Park.

Joe Hentz comes to the park often to throw a ball for his golden retriever rescue named Layla.

"I gotta throw it in the direction she’s running or she won’t see it,” said Hentz.

Hentz said it takes seven throws to wear out Layla.

"If she gets her exercise, she’s content all day long,” he continued.

But above the park, you can see the abandoned mine shafts.

"A little scary. The open caves, you worry about people you know, collapses or something,” said Hentz.

The caves can be dangerous. They are filled with graffiti and broken beer bottles from weekend bonfires.

News 3 even met a man inside the cave who is illegally building a two-story home.

With the southwest end of the Las Vegas Valley expanding, and homes so close to the caves, workers will try to make the area safer.

In three weeks, the caves will be sealed with rocks and dirt, paving the way for a new park with hiking and horse trails.

According to Clark County Spokesman Dan Kulin, the park is just a concept right now.

There is no timeline or funding in place, but sealing the caves would be the first step in the project.

Those who live in the area are excited about the idea.

Eugene Quilantang knows the park could be another spot to take his 4-year-old daughter Juliana to get some fresh air.

"It’s good for cardio. Get off the couch. Get the kids off their electronics,” explained Eugene Quilantang.

A new park could mean a new place to tire out his dog Layla with a game of fetch.

"When she walks back, I know she’s tired,” he said as Layla walked back to him with a ball in her mouth.

close video ad
Unmutetoggle ad audio on off