Waiting on weather

Construction stalls opening of Haymaker course

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— Forty cubic yards of concrete and a certificate of occupancy are all that stands between eager golfers and the opening of Haymaker Golf Course.

If the weather in Steamboat Springs cooperates this week, those barriers could be removed. In that event, golfers would not only be allowed on the driving range, but they could play the entire 18-hole course by Saturday. The driving range originally was scheduled to open last weekend.

"We are day-to-day right now," said John Van--derbloemen, chairman of the Haymaker Golf Management Committee. "It still depends on the weather and getting our certificate of occupancy."

The interior work of the course's new $3.9 million clubhouse is nearly complete, but contractors still are busy trying to finish the critical concrete work outside the building. The clubhouse can't secure a certificate of occupancy from the Routt County Building Department until that work has been completed.

Despite missing the planned opening of the driving range last weekend, Vanderbloemen insisted the construction project is on schedule.

He said contractors had until May 8 to finish the work on the clubhouse and that the deadline to finish the concrete work outside was pushed back in the fall because of a shortage of concrete, which was the result of the damage inflicted in New Orleans by Hurricane Katrina.

Vanderbloemen said contractors were unable to complete several projects planned outside the clubhouse in the fall that had to be pushed to the spring. Some of the other concrete projects had to wait until this spring.

The Haymaker Golf Man----agement Committee had hoped the contractors would be able to make up for lost time, but wet and cold weather has made it nearly impossible to pour concrete, Vanderbloemen said.

"Obviously, the city and the golf committee are excited to see the golf course and the new clubhouse open to the public," Vanderbloemen said. "We still need to finish up some sidewalks, ramp access and cart paths before we can satisfy the building department."

Parks, Open Space and Recreational Services Director Chris Wilson, who is managing the clubhouse project for the city of Steamboat Springs, said about 40 cubic yards of concrete must be poured to get a temporary certificate of occupancy that would allow the clubhouse to open for business.

Seventy cubic yards of concrete still needs to be poured before the course gets an official certificate of occupancy, Wilson said.

But getting that certificate doesn't mean construction work at the course will be finished. Wilson said contractors continue to work on a punch list of non-critical details. Later this spring, the parking lot will be paved, and landscaping will be completed.

Vanderbloemen hopes the course and pro shop will open Saturday. The course's restaurant, which will be operated by Dominick and Karen Riggio, is expected to provide limited food service within a week of opening. The full-service restaurant should be operational shortly after that.

-- To reach John F. Russell, call 871-4209

or e-mail jrussell@steamboatpilot.com

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