Glenwood Springs set to present three possible scenarios for Sayre Park improvements next week | PostIndependent.com

Glenwood Springs set to present three possible scenarios for Sayre Park improvements next week

Park improvements are being proposed for Sayre Park Thursday between 5:30 and 7:30 p.m. at the community center for further public outreach
Kyle Mills / Post Independent

The city of Glenwood Springs will host an open house meeting May 30 to gauge residents’ reactions to three scenarios for potential improvements at the city’s most-central park.

“Sayre Park is a real gem of a park,” Parks and Recreation Director Brian Smith said in a press release regarding the park that lines the middle portion of Grand Avenue. “It’s a historic park that many consider to be a focal point in our community.”

The park is home to the annual Strawberry Days festival in June, during which it is informally renamed “Strawberry Park.” Throughout the year, it hosts a variety of sporting activities, picnics, community events and more.

Recently, the city contracted with Zehren and Associates — with offices in Avon and Santa Barbara, California — which provides design services including landscape architecture and master planning.

“The city would like this to be a citizen-driven process where the interests of the family across the street who use the park every day are just as considered as organizations who wish to see a specific amenity put in for their use,” Smith detailed.

Next Thursday’s meeting will take place between 5:30 and 7:30 p.m. at the Glenwood Springs Community Center, located at 100 Wulfsohn Road.

“We’ve been out there on a number of days and done a lot of interviews,” VeraCity Planner Andrew McGregor said in a separate interview of the casual park users he had spoken to.

“People have been very passionate about commenting,” said McGregor, a former Glenwood Springs community development director.

VeraCity, also part of the project consultant team, has been tasked with a bilingual public outreach campaign concerning the Sayre Park Master Plan.

That outreach, according to fellow VeraCity Planner Ellie Caryl, has allowed residents, businesses, churches, schools, health-care providers, sports-league organizers and major event hosts to weigh in.

“There seems to be a real affection for Sayre Park,” Caryl commented. “People really appreciate the fact that it is so multi-use.”

However, the historic multi-use park that was donated by James Sayre to the city in 1940 with the stipulation that it would remain just that — a park — has a few concerning issues.

According to the press release, the park along the heart of Grand Avenue has a “failing and inefficient irrigation system” and an “obsolete playground.”

Additionally, Sayre has multiple, separated sections, which receive under and over utilization, as well as “areas that are used for activities that weren’t intended for the space.”

At the May 30 public meeting, Zehren and Associates will present three scenarios for potential improvements, based on information gathered to date in conjunction with the firm’s experience in previous park design projects throughout Colorado.

“The city would like this to be a citizen-driven process where the interests of the family across the street who use the park every day are just as considered as organizations who wish to see a specific amenity put in for their use,” Smith detailed in the press release. “Public input will be key to understanding how the park is currently used and how the public would like to use it in the future.”

Following the May 30 open house meeting, the city will launch an online community survey for further public outreach.

Additionally, a second community open house will take place on July 11, also at the Community Center, to present the preferred option scenario.

Sayre Park offers a variety of recreation options to users, including volleyball, basketball, tennis and a baseball field that doubles as a soccer field.

The park also features open space, picnic areas and hosts the 122-year old Strawberry Days Festival each June.

mabennett@postindependent.com


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