Veltus no longer in race for new Glenwood Springs bike park
Glenwood Springs’ Parks and Recreation Commission believes a bike terrain park would contribute as a valuable asset to the community, just not in Veltus Park.
Originally, the discussion pedaled its way before the city parks commission in February when Rick Fout gave a presentation regarding the idea. However, the feasibility of it being located in Veltus, located on the Roaring Fork River just upstream from the confluence with the Colorado River, of remained in question.
According to City Council liaison to the Parks and Recreation Commission, Steve Davis, the proposed bike park in Veltus actually came to a vote of the advisory panel.
“That doesn’t happen often, on anything,” Davis said at the Thursday City Council meeting in regards to the commission actually making a motion and taking a vote at its May 9 meeting.
“It effectively said that they, the park board, would fully support a bike park,” He said. “They think it’s important for the youth of this community to have that, anywhere but Veltus Park.”
Other options for a bike terrain park now include Two Rivers Park and the Wulsohn Mountain Park area behind the Glenwood Springs Community Center.
After the concept of a bike park in Veltus, often referred to as Kiwanis Park because of the service club’s many projects there, started gaining traction, it was met with obstacles from opponents, particularly Kiwanis Club members.
Councilor Todd Leahy inquired what the Parks and Rec board’s main issues were with Veltus.
“There was a tremendous outpouring from the Kiwanis,” Davis said. “They feel like that’s their park. They feel like they have a voice there and the majority of the people that spoke were Kiwanians.”
According to the Glenwood Springs Kiwanis Club’s Facebook Page, the club meets every Tuesday evening from June through October for a barbecue.
Bike park project consultant Brian Buell said he wasn’t shocked, and not necessarily disappointed with the Parks and Recreation Commission decision, “as it was kind of community oriented and that’s kind of what this project is,” he said.
“There are other user groups that have considerations in terms of what they want the area to be used for, so we want to respect that, especially those that are long-time established within the area … It’s an asset that the public, community members and council have advocated for,” Buell explained.
While Veltus may have been the original, desired location for the new bike park, proponents of the project now have their eyes on two other possible locations.
“There’s always been some other locations in mind for something similar if not even bigger,” Buell said. “The setting is definitely very important. It needs to be pretty central within the area; easy access to get to.”
“Two Rivers Park is another idea,” Buell said. “There is some space that is being under utilized. That could be a bike improvement there.
“It’s more of an open space parcel compared to being in the trees in Veltus, but that’s kind of where things might be going next in terms of consideration for the next venue.”
Another suggested space included the area located behind the Community Center on the Wulfsohn Mountain Park area, where a network of mountain bike trails are located. However, according to Buell, at the moment that parcel would serve as their third or, at least at this time, least desirable option.
“The infrastructure is kind of a concern. There is no irrigation set up. There is no access for maintenance needs. So, a lot of those resources would have to be implemented to have a successful bike park up there, whereas Two Rivers Park the resources are already there.”
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A report released this month by the Center for Colorado River Studies says that in order to sustainably manage the river in the face of climate change, officials need alternative management paradigms and a different way of thinking compared with the status quo. Estimates about how much water the Upper Colorado River Basin states will use in the future are a problem that needs rethinking, according to the white paper.