Board approves improvements to Lions Pond trails under master plan |

Board approves improvements to Lions Pond trails under master plan

A rendering of the construction to take place at Lions Pond trails.
McKenna Harford /

FRASER — The Fraser Board of Trustees voted Wednesday night to approve a bid on the pilot project of the Fraser River Corridor Master Plan, which would involve reconstructing trails around Lions Pond.

The trail reconstruction would mainly focus on accessibility, including widening trails and replacing the asphalt. The approved bid, from local contractor Skinny Traffic LLC, would cost $59,696, which would come from the town’s general fund. Catherine Trotter, Fraser town planner, said the bid came in under what the staff had estimated.

“In terms of getting something done this year, redoing those trails is a no-brainer,” said Jeff Durbin, Fraser town manager. “The trails have failed a little bit, they’re not accessible.”

The pilot project also includes planting new trees along Lions Pond, which would not be part of the bid, but the responsibility of the town. Trotter said the town will be partnering with a local ranch to plant the trees. She expects the construction on both parts of the project to begin in early September, when traffic in the area has decreased.

“We wanted to pick a project that is visible and that the public, that was part of all the public engagement, sees that we are doing something,” Trotter said. “We’re serious about this, but we need to have a project that’s not going to get ripped up when we move forward with something else next summer.”

The reconstruction around Lions Pond represents the first steps the town has taken since approving the master plan in March. The master plan ultimately outlines $6.5 million in improvements and additions to the Cozens Ranch Open Space area located on the east side of Highway 40.

Durbin said the next steps will include discussions about what should be the next phase of the master plan and grant applications for funding.

“What we are working on for next year is, when (the board) looks at the budget, how much from the general fund is the board willing to put toward some projects, what are the priority projects, and then we will work on a grant strategy for grant money,” Durbin said.

Though it’s not part of the master plan, the board also discussed a plan to reroute County Road 72 around Fraser’s new recycling facility, The Drop. Durbin emphasized the reroute would help make the road safer because it would get rid of the incline of the current road.

According to Durbin, the construction would cost around $320,000, but that would be shared between Fraser, Grand County and Denver Water, which has an obligation to help fund it under their special-use agreement with the county. The board decided not to take any action on the project until there is an official intergovernmental agreement with Grand County.

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