RFTA eyes purchasing Glenwood’s troubled Municipal Operations Center | PostIndependent.com

RFTA eyes purchasing Glenwood’s troubled Municipal Operations Center

An example of foundation damage at the Glenwood Springs Municipal Operations Center in West Glenwood.
Chelsea Self / Post Independent

As the city of Glenwood Springs relocates employees out of its municipal operations center, RFTA has expressed interest in purchasing the “slowly sinking” facility.

According to a Sept. 12 nonbinding letter of intent addressed to City Manager Debra Figueroa, RFTA has proposed paying $1.2 million in cash for the municipal operations property and $60,000 in cash for the 0.62-acre access road leading up to the center located at 2301 Wulfsohn Road.

The letter of intent, signed by RFTA CEO Dan Blankenship, additionally stated that RFTA would provide up to $300,000 worth of contributions to future projects being considered by RFTA and the city.

One of which includes RFTA contributing $100,000 more for the Glenwood Springs/RFTA Corridor Study thus reducing the city’s estimated share of the study’s cost to $241,000.

RFTA would also “assume financial responsibility for the demolition of the [Glenwood Springs Municipal Operations Center] building.”

Constructed nearly 20 years ago, the roughly 35,000-square-foot municipal operations center houses the city’s electric, fleet, parks, streets and SWAT (special work activities team) departments.

“Full time employees using the facility is in the range of 55 to 60,” said Matthew Langhorst, Glenwood Springs public works director. “Employees are still within the [municipal operations center] facility, but a majority of them will be out of the building prior to the end of the year.”

In 2011, city employees first noticed the municipal operations center was under settlement distress. Since then, the city has attempted to secure the facility on different occasions, but to no avail.

In 2014 grouting operations were completed however a survey-monitoring program following the work appeared to show that the building was still moving. In 2017 it was determined that there was “no definite reason” why the building was continuing to move according a report completed by J.R. Harris and Company.

Additionally, this past summer, Structural Engineer Adolfo Gorra of Glenwood Structural Associates informed city council that he could not guarantee the safety of the structure past 30 days and recommended prudent action.

As a result the city has purchased property at 191 Soccer Field Road for approximately $1.29 million to house its parks department.

The city has also bought the former McCandless Truck Center at 2222 Devereux Road for roughly $2 million to house its fleet, streets and SWAT Departments.

“We are working on a new temporary location for [the electric department] with a permanent location being planned out,” Langhorst said.

According to a city council staff report, RFTA remains interested in acquiring the municipal operations center property in order to expand and build a regional transit hub.

City council may approve the letter of intent with RFTA at Thursday’s  regularly scheduled meeting. The letter of intent states that the, “deal points are for discussion purposes only and shall not constitute or be deemed a binding agreement.”

Additionally, the letter of intent will expire if a fully signed contract for purchase and sale does not occur by all parties by Dec. 31, 2019


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