Wednesday, November 12, 2003
At a meeting tonight, residents will have detailed drawings to help them help the city decide how to use the Bear River parcel.
Working under a grant from Great Outdoors Colorado, the city has less than two months to complete a master plan for the area. The plan proposes to transform 18 acres of old sewer lagoons into a city park west of town.
City Director of Parks, Open Space and Recreational Services Chris Wilson said that several schematic drawings would be reviewed at tonight's meeting. In past meetings, residents have looked at drawings with less detail.
"This is more real world versus conceptual. We have started taking the ideas and filtering down," Wilson said.
This summer, the city received a GOCo grant to help fund the planning for the Bear River parcel. The city hired Mountain West Designs Group to begin the planning process.
Since August, residents have been attending meetings to weigh in on what they would like to see in the park.
Residents have said they want to see the Yampa River realigned through that area, along with wetland enhancement, river access, hard- and soft-surface trails, a skate park, playgrounds, picnic areas, Frisbee golf and open space.
Many of the residents and neighbors attending previous meetings said they did not want to see ball fields that could be used for Triple Crown.
But Wilson said Wednesday that the Bear River parcel was one of a few sites that the city and chamber of commerce included in a proposal to Triple Crown for more ball fields. The proposal also includes three parcels owned by the Steamboat Springs School District and land near Christian Heritage.
Under a five-year contract signed in September 2002, the city said it would present a plan by Aug. 20, 2003, for adding two to four more ball fields that Triple Crown could use. If the city did not present the plan, Triple Crown could have broken the contract after the 2004 season.
The city and the Steamboat Springs Chamber Resort Association are scheduled to meet with Triple Crown founder Dave King in December. At that meeting, Wilson said, the city's proposal, along with the possible use of Emerald Mountain ballparks, will be discussed.
Wilson said the council has not yet dedicated any money for improvements to the Bear River parcel.
But with a master plan, Wilson said it would be easier to write grants and to build sections of the park as funding comes along.
The master plan will first come before the city's Parks and Recreation Committee, Wilson said, and then before the City Council. The City Council's adoption of the plan is not required to meet GOCo's stipulation of having a master plan completed before the first of the year.
-- To reach Christine Metz call 871-4229
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