City Council Breakfast Meeting Covers Roads and Recreation


 Pond at North Gateway Park

Pond at North Gateway Park

It will be several more months before the City of Lamar finds out if it can begin updates at the new North Gateway Park using grant funds.  This winter the city applied for a ‘Fishing for Fun’ grant from the Colorado Department of Parks and Wildlife and was recently named CPW’s Southeast Region Partner of the Year.  The award goes to organizations that effectively engage new audiences in outdoor recreation in Colorado. 

The city, working with the Parks and Recreation Department and the CPW, has listed a few priority items that will see initial development.  “One of the first tasks we’ll complete is constructing permanent chemical restrooms for the public,” according to City Administrator, John Sutherland.  He said that once that’s been accomplished, the blue porta-potties that are located around the pond and parking lot will be removed.  “We’ve also received numerous requests to build a handicapped accessible fishing ramp out into the pond,” he added.  Right now, anyone wanting to cast their line into the main pond has to negotiate a dirt slope which was graded last year to make it more navigable to the general public.  The main pond is accessible from 360 degrees, but the easiest access is from the main parking area.  “Other plans call for a floating dock, but that’s all contingent on funding,” Sutherland said.  He was also open to the idea of some kind of seasonal concession stand, but the logistics of setting one up at the site were only a consideration at this point. 

One other project the city has been considering is beginning work to connect Camino de Santa Fe to East Olive Street.  Sutherland said the idea is almost two decades old, but funding and an approved plan from CDOT has been key to any development.  “Walmart paid for the signal light at the entrance to the store’s parking lot,” Sutherland stated during the monthly informal breakfast meeting on Wednesday, March 5.  CDOT has suggested moving it back on East Olive to the new intersection, as two lights in close proximity on the same road wouldn’t work.  Sutherland said CDOT has also suggested constructing a concrete median which will take extra funds and more design work.  “We’ve also worked around the idea of only have right turns at the intersection,” he said, adding, “eastbound traffic from East Olive would turn right onto Camino de Santa Fe, but exiting traffic would also have to turn only to the right according to their suggestion.” Sutherland said he thought some preliminary work could be underway by the end of March. 

The Lamar City Council holds an informal breakfast meeting the first Wednesday of every month at participating restaurants in Lamar.  The public is welcome to attend to ask questions of their representatives or make suggestions about matters of concern.

By Russ Baldwin

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