Update On Town Projects
With spring popping up just around the corner, the Town has a number of projects on our plate that you’ll be seeing in one stage or another over the next few months. I wanted to give you a short update on a number of these projects that we’re working on.
The latest stage of the Bond Park improvements is right on schedule. Of all our current projects, I’ve probably heard the most about this one. Yes, we know it’s a mess, but I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised when it’s finished. We plan to have it completed by Memorial Day.
Staff is working on our grant application for the Federal Lands Access Program Grant or FLAP. This is the proposed project for a two way couplet system, reducing the traffic along Elkhorn downtown by half and easing much of the downtown congestions. The grant application is due May 15th. After that, we probably won’t hear if we received the grant until sometime this fall. If we are successful, it will be 18-24 months in design and to meet all the federal environmental requirements for the project before any work begins on the ground.
Improvements to Moraine avenue will be beginning in the next few weeks. This project is aimed at improving the safety of pedestrians walking along Moraine from Elkhorn south toward Riverside Drive. These improvements should be completed by the end of May.
Work has already begun on the Multipurpose Events Center and the new Stall Barn. The addition of new a sewer line and site grading has been completed (on time and under budget) and final design of the steel structure is underway. Construction will begin this summer with completion expected fall of 2014. This facility will be a great addition to our community and allow us to have events, trade shows and conference that we haven’t been able to host in the past. If you’ve ever been to the First National Exhibition Hall at The Ranch in Loveland, this facility will be similar to that facility, only a little smaller. Even before construction is starts, we will be marketing the facility. Combined with the nearby Estes Park Conference Center, these two facilities make a great package for groups wanting to have their event in Estes Park.
The Town was recently awarded a grant of $337,000 for the continuation of the Fall River pedestrian and bike trail. Much of this grant will be used for planning and design and for the environmental compliance that will be required, since much of the trail is right along Fall River. Although you won’t see much happening on the ground yet, this grant is a great leap forward that will allow us to use future Larimer County Open Space dollars and possibly lottery funds to complete this trail.
Design will be starting soon for the parking structure to be built next to the visitors center. Watch for upcoming opportunities to give input on the design and aesthetics of the structure. This is a major project for the Town that is funded from a number of sources. We’ve been very successful bringing in grants to help build this sorely needed piece of infrastructure, including a $329,000 grant through the Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality (CMAQ) Improvement Program from the Colorado Department of Transportation, a $400,000 grant through the FASTER program from the Colorado Department of Transportation, and a $3 million from the Paul S. Sarbanes Transit in Parks Program of the U.S. Department of Transportation. The Town will match 20 percent of the total project cost, currently estimated at approximately $4.6 million.
Lastly, we are meeting on a regular basis with other groups in the community in preparation for the Pro-Cycling Bike Race that will be coming through town on August 24th. This will probably be the largest spectator event we have ever had in Town. It takes hours of planning and coordination to pull off a huge event like this without a hitch. The Pro-Cycling Challenge is second only to the Tour de France in the number of spectators at a cycling event. This is a great opportunity to showcase our community to worldwide audience. You’ll be hearing a lot more about the planning for this in the weeks and months to come.
As always, if you have and ideas, comments, suggestions or questions about these or any town activities, please give us a call. We work for you and we appreciate your input.