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Old 06-24-2010   #31
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 12
I'm currently the chairwoman on the Land Conservation and Stewardship Board (city advisory board for the open space/natural areas program), if this would/could fit into the natural areas program in some way and there are actual plans that could be presented I could try and get this on an upcoming agenda. While I have very little time to donate right now, if I can help make the right connections let me know. Jeff has my personal contact information if you all need to get a hold of me, email works best.


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Old 06-24-2010   #32
Fort Collins, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1997
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 141
Here's an opportunity to provide some input to the city, or at least see how a whitewater park fits into the Community Vision:

Shaping the Future: Community Workshop (June 29 and 30)

Help Shape Fort Collins - How will we live, work, play, and travel in the future? Review the draft Community Vision and learn what changes it might take to accomplish the vision. Understand trade-offs and costs of different policy choices. Help define preferred directions. Activities will occur throughout the evening and will be repeated at a morning session. See the event schedule below to determine what works best for you.

News & Events: City of Fort Collins

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Old 06-24-2010   #33
Ft Collins, Colorado
Paddling Since: 92
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 38
Hey, guys--

This is a great time to push hard for this. The city is in the midst of an update to the long-term city plan (Plan Fort Collins: City of Fort Collins). I know how frustrating it has been working with the city over the years, but the park will not happen without buy-in from council, and this will depend on building a consensus among paddlers, downtown businesses, and citizens that a play park is a critical step for downtown development. Many, many people are interested in making the Poudre a more visible, well-utilized centerpiece for the city, but any change to the status quo will need to occur within the context of water rights/flows/NISP and habitat/floodplain/land ownership considerations, not to mention existing brownfield issues. There is no reason a whitewater park can't be developed within these constraints, but they will probably affect siting and river bed modifications somewhat.

As for strategy, building momentum through facebook, a working group, etc. is a great idea, but I strongly believe we need to integrate this advocacy into the Plan Ft Collins process. There is a stakeholder group focused specifically on the Poudre that involves all of the key players, and city council and staff will look to this group to provide a visionary framework for future development and policy related to the Poudre. The mechanism to be heard already exists--we need to suck it up and get involved, en masse, even though it may/will be frustrating at times.

Gary Wockner would be a great guy to touch base with since he has a deep understanding of Poudre issues and city politics, and his primary interests are fairly well aligned with a play park. However, he would NOT be an ideal spokesman for our group. I served on the city water board with him, and while he is a tireless and knowledgeable advocate, he is an extremely polarizing figure in local politics. If we are to be successful, we will need to work cooperatively with a wide variety of stakeholders to find common ground.

Just some thoughts. I like the multi-headed plan of attack, and let's make Poudre focus group of Plan Ft Collins the center of our approach (Focus Groups: City of Fort Collins). Numbers count, so get involved and show up to the next meetings. The next meetings are scheduled for June 29 and 30--may not be heavy on Poudre issues, but the initial conversations will be summarized, and you can sign up for the appropriate email lists.
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Old 06-24-2010   #34
Ft Collins, Colorado
Paddling Since: 92
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 38
Results of the initial brainstorming meeting ( )

• Develop defined policy for access and development (not one-size-fits-all, address by
districts, and customize according to objectives, including floodplain protection, absolute
approach may not work). Put in unified document.
• Development on one side of the river might balance habitat, access, and aesthetics and
avoid urbanization of the river.
• Overcome river as barrier or boundary.
• Integrate Old Town, but address what this looks like with regards to flows.
• Address the College/river wildlife habitat barrier.
• Improve instream flows, purchase water for release, address water quality.
• Trail system is great, but amenities are lacking.
• Recognize/carry forward the 1997 City Plan “highest rated image/desired community
character” of Poudre River. mention of a play park, but the framework is all there. Get involved or it won't happen.
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Old 06-24-2010   #35
Ft Collins, Colorado
Paddling Since: 92
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 38
Summary of discussion items for upcoming meeting (p. 37 of ) :

The community has expressed interest in managing
and protecting the Cache la Poudre River’s
aesthetic and ecological values since the first City
Plan in 1997. In fact, the natural aesthetic values of
the river rated higher than other values at that time.
The community continues to have elevated interest
in the river and its condition. The issues are
complex, because of reservoir proposals that would
affect the river, and because water flows have been
reduced from historic flows due to diversions for
municipal, industrial, and agricultural uses. This
section addresses water supply and flow-related
issues—not potential development or conservation
of the river banks. Plan Fort Collins will not be able
to resolve the community debate surrounding all the
Cache la Poudre River issues, some of which are
regional in scope; however, it can help strengthen
the City’s resolve to support a resilient river, as
suggested in the following potential policy direction.
Emphasize a resilient Cache la Poudre River to
meet multiple objectives, including a clean water
supply, a functioning ecosystem, and recreation
ENV12-A: What Would it Take?
Supporting this policy will require City staff and
resources to work with the community to develop a
detailed plan to achieve a resilient Cache la Poudre
River and achieve other City water policies (e.g.,
water supply and management, stormwater
management, safe drinking water, etc.)
ENV12-A: What Could this Mean to the Community?
The river topic is complex and currently under
study, due to the proposed Glade Reservoir. This
analysis section merely touches on some of the
potential outcomes discussed. Economically, a
resilient river policy could create tradeoffs related to
water resource planning for regional reservoirs and
ability to plan water supply for future development.
However, such a policy direction could
economically benefit residents and businesses
relying on a river with adequate flows to support
clean drinking water, recreation, and other
businesses. The effects of maintaining flows on
drinking water quality and the City’s water treatment
facility are somewhat unknown, but maintaining
minimum flow levels could avoid taxpayer costs to
adapt the treatment facility for reduced flows.
Socially, having a resilient river is important to
people who use it for recreation and who appreciate
its visual qualities. Clean water contributes to safe
drinking water, which in turn contributes to public
health. Environmentally, maintaining a resilient river
with ecologically meaningful instream flows ensures
that the river ecology can be maintained to support
aquatic systems (fish and invertebrates) and the life
that depends on the river.
Do you agree with the policy direction
proposed in ENV12-A?
(Please use this area for your notes and record your
final responses on a comment card or online.)
�� Support
�� Leaning toward supporting
(but needs refinement)
�� Neutral
�� Do not support
�� Other (please explain)
The City should address the following topics related
to the river’s health (check all that apply):
�� Coordinate with other cities
�� Protect and restore river banks
�� Manage water flow (peak flows and winter
�� Educate about water conservation (e.g.,
landscaping irrigation and household use
and efficient municipal uses)
�� Trade urban/agricultural water use
�� None of the above
�� Other (please explain)

"Other" could very well be a play park! OK, that's all I got for today.

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Old 06-24-2010   #36
Paddling Since: 1993
Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 176
Duncan, after our discussion last night on the way up to the river, I think there is an ulterior motive for not wanting to build anything in the riverbed below college. The city spent tens of millions of dollars there in the past five years to mitigate coal sluge and other petrochemical contaminants. I suspect the city will continually stall on this project as long as the proposed site is potentially in a superfund site. If this is the case then changing the location could be what is necessary to get this ball rolling again.
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Old 06-25-2010   #37
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Teacher, Fort Collins, Colorado
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 251

So everybody, why don't we get together soon and start hashing out a clear plan for our approach? Adrian, you mentioned you could spearhead the meeting? Most of us like beer! If we can't do it at NB my lady works at FCB so we could meet up over there probably.

I think we will be most effective if we come up with a plan that has specific points we want to identify/accomplish, a big point being location. If clean up efforts (etc.) are indeed hampering the preferred location, I think we should identify that with certainty now and move on if necessary. As an ancillary push, people need to be of course sending emails/making phone calls to some of those already mentioned in this thread.

This discussion has gotten some good ideas flowing again, so let's hone our vision a bit before another year goes by--some of you have been working on this project for many years, so let's just identify the hang ups with the city/county so we don't keep getting skunked. I know we can get this accomplished in this city (or in LaPorte), and now is the time.
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Old 06-25-2010   #38
Lyons, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1991
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 256
I would recommend skiiping all the letters and emails and ask each of these town board members out for a coffee where you can have a small free discussion on their thoughts. Ask them what their concerns are and then address them with why this is a good idea. Lobbying groups exist for a very good reason in politics, whether you like them or not. Make them your advocates and not your enemies. This approach will help build "quiet" support before you do any public hearings. Letters and emails can be too easily construed as antagonistic and puts people on the defensive.
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Old 06-28-2010   #39
Fort Collins, Colorado
Paddling Since: 2003
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 400
Send a message via Yahoo to jeffy
What do we need to do to get the ball rolling here?
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Old 06-28-2010   #40
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Golden, Colorado
Paddling Since: 1984
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 1,879
Some good info is buried in the this thread - if Adrock or someone else that's willing to own this & post a new condensed thread about the Planning events tomorrow and Wednesday, I'll make it a sticky. I'd do it myself but I have a shitload of work today and I'm not a FTC resident; and it's probably better that one of the more involved folks take the lead on this. Sounds like there are two very important sessions in the 2-day meetings in which it would be great to get some significant participation.

News & Events: City of Fort Collins
It would be nice to include the Facebook page link and get those numbers to a substantial level (in the 1000's); although that may not sway council members too much, they can't ignore it when there's documented interest in a project.

On a related note, I was in Lyons yesterday and it's obvious how much impact their park has, well beyond your typical whitewater enthusiast. The place was packed with 'other' river users; tubers, picnickers that were watching the action, etc. They outnumbered any boaters by 20:1.

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