Meeting on White Water park for Basalt CO. Same designer as G-Wood.
Basalt Town Council is scheduled to hear the issue today (2/24/2009) at 6:45 p.m.
Lets all keep our fingers crossed that this happens in these tough times.
Article Here: Aspen Daily News
Pitkin County Attorney John Ely hopes to persuade Basalt Town Council tonight that at a modest whitewater park on the Roaring Fork River across from the Elk Run neighborhood is a good idea.
If Town Council likes the idea, Ely wants Basalt to apply with the county by March 2 to Great Outdoors Colorado for a $200,000 grant to help pay for the park, which is estimated to cost just over $1 million.
Ely has been developing the Basalt kayak park idea for months and says so far he has received positive feedback from “individuals in the kayak and rafting communities, fishermen, representatives of CDOT, officials from the town of Basalt, and members of the consulting firm that worked on the Basalt River Master Plan.”
“Although the idea of a river park began as a vehicle for enhancing and improving the environmental condition of this particular reach of the Roaring Fork, it became readily apparent that such a recreational resource would be highly prized, widely accepted and utilized by a great number of kayakers and rafters in the mid-valley area,” Ely wrote in a memo to Town Council.
The stretch of river is just below the low and indistinct “bypass” bridge in Basalt at the intersection of upper Two Rivers Road and Highway 82.
Ely put the idea for the whitewater park together after considering a number of factors. He knew that Guido Meyer had once donated the land for Fisherman’s Park to Pitkin County, and so the county owns a bit of riverfront property with a crude dirt boat ramp on it, as well as a small parking lot, picnic shelter and restrooms in the park across the street.
Ely knew that the state of Colorado now recognizes water rights for recreational purposes, such as kayak parks, and that those water rights, especially in this location where the Roaring Fork River exits Pitkin County, can help ensure that at least a modest amount of water always flows down the river.
Ely knew that the state highway department already needs to work on the river in that reach to clear material away from the poorly placed bridge pillars that stand in the river.
And he knew that a kayak park might well fit in with the town’s detailed river master plan.
“The concept of a river park or kayak course began as a vehicle with which to enhance stream flows on this reach of the Roaring Fork River, to enhance the natural riparian habitat that could develop in this area and to stimulate active recreation and use of real property already owned by Pitkin County in this area,” Ely wrote.
Pitkin County paid for a preliminary feasibility study by The McLaughlin Group, which found that flows in that stretch of the Fork were generally high enough to create play waves for kayaks, but that they would be much smaller than the monster kayak wave recently built in the Colorado River in West Glenwood Springs.
With funding from Pitkin County Open Space and Trails, Ely has also hired Jason Carey of River Restoration — who created the Glenwood wave — to do a preliminary conceptual design for the Basalt whitewater park.
Carey’s design includes a sidewalk and parallel parking spaces between Two Rivers Road and the river, as well as accessible multi-level overlooks and stairs leading down to the river. In the river channel itself there would be two “whitewater structures” and two groupings of “habitat boulders” at either end of the whitewater park.
Basalt Town Council is scheduled to hear the issue today at 6:45 p.m.