New Castle lands $192,000 park grant
New Castle received more than $192,000 in grant money from Great Outdoors Colorado that will allow the completion of wetlands enhancements and other improvements at Alder Park in the Castle Valley area.”We are trying to catch up with the park space needs of our community. This will create new entrances to the park and allow a natural setting for the new trails,” town Project Coordinator Jim Stevens said in a press release.The award is the largest GOCO grant the town has received, and was one of 28 winning projects out of 48 applications in a very competitive round of Local Parks and Outdoor Recreation grants, Stevens said.”We are very fortunate to have been able to land this with such tough competition, and we really appreciate the help from GOCO staff,” he said.The proposed $358,000 project will allow citizens access from the east, west and south sides of Alder Park via new trails and bridges. Approved plans include adding two ponds, planting trees, paving a 40-spot parking area and creating space for outdoor education programs for local schoolchildren.A new trail with bridges will connect the Castle Valley playground on the west side of the park to the two existing micro-soccer fields, and extend to a new Kids’ Camp area on the east side near Kathryn Senor Elementary.Work will start in the fall, including tree planting, trails construction and parking lot paving. The park ponds should be installed next spring, and the entire project should be completed by August 2005.The remaining funds for the park will come from the town’s half-percent parks, open space and trails tax as well as the $500 parks dedication fee charged for each new home constructed. Local developers and various organizations have been asked to contribute in-kind assistance and equipment toward the park, and volunteer work days are planned to involve citizens.Although the GOCO grant for Alder Park was successful, another town request for funding for the large North Park planned east of Kathryn Senor Elementary was not approved due to its “lack of regional impact,” Stevens reported. Town officials continue to plan, design and seek funding for future park needs, including North Park, the smaller South Park near South Wildhorse Drive, and a new Riverside Park along the Colorado River southeast of town.
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Defiende Nuestra Tierra, a branch within Wilderness Workshop, is trying to bring traditional, outdoor winter activities to people who might not have experienced them before by breaking down barriers to access.