Improvements headed to Sayre Park after community groups fund majority of phase one construction costs |

Improvements headed to Sayre Park after community groups fund majority of phase one construction costs

Sayre Park on a snowy and cloudy afternoon in Glenwood Springs.
Chelsea Self / Post Independent

A partnership between the city of Glenwood Springs and various community groups will fund improvements to the home of Strawberry Days — Sayre Park. 

City Council last Thursday unanimously approved allocating approximately $110,000 from the city’s Park Impact Fees Fund for Sayre Park’s phase one improvements.

“These are impact fees that developers, through the years, have to pay into,” Mayor Jonathan Godes said. “That is what this fund is set aside for, to improve our parks.”

The city’s contribution was a match to the more than $147,000 local nonprofit Game On Camps, Hoop d’Ville — organizers of a popular summertime basketball camp and a 3-on-3 basketball tournament, respectively — and Grand River Construction were able to raise. 

Game On Camps Founder Cassandra Irving referees a youth game during a past Hoop D’Ville basketball tournament at Sayre Park in Glenwood Springs.
Post Independent file

According to a news release, Gregg and Marilee Rippy of Grand River Construction contributed up to $100,000 of in-kind services to Sayre Park’s phase one improvements.  

Gregg Rippy has also volunteered to manage the project. 

Subsequently, the city will pay for 40% of the improvements, whereas community groups that have a vested interest in the park facilities will fund the rest. 

“It’s a great model for how we should be doing park improvements,” Brian Smith, Glenwood Springs Parks and Recreation director, said. “A great example of how businesses, service groups and citizen committees can work in partnership with city leaders to build improvements that increase the quality of life for all residents.”   

Sayre Park phase one objectives

  • Demolition of basketball court and gazebo 
  • Construction of three new basketball courts and lighting
  • Installation of ADA curb ramps and pathways
  • Installation of a new drinking fountain with a bottle filler and water service
  • Landscaping and park entry beautification
  • Irrigation modifications
  • Way-finding signage
  • Installation of new furnishings, benches and trash receptacles

Although not originally part of phase one’s improvements, council added onto that list replacing the park’s stairs from the mid-bench down to the courts.

“It’s a safety concern that we wanted to make sure was addressed,” Smith said.

Especially during larger events like Strawberry Days, Smith said the stairs do not suffice; council unanimously agreed.

Including the replacement of the stairs, the project has an estimated cost of just over $250,000 — 60% of which, will come from various community stakeholders. 

Smith said the gazebo, which the Rotary Club installed years ago, had aged and needed replacement. 

“It’s time to take it down and redo it,” Smith said. 

According to Smith, construction will likely begin in April in order to complete all of phase one’s improvements ahead of Strawberry Days in June. 

Additionally, the project has been designated as an Enterprise Zone Contribution Project. This provides an additional tax credit for donors of up to 25% of their donation.

“It means everything and it’s a game changer,” Godes said. “Being able to leverage government resources and public funds along with tapping into people’s philanthropy is a way to get things done in town that you’re passionate about.”

The entire Sayre Park Project includes multiple phases. Phase one focused on the park’s northwest quadrant.      

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