Fraser Rec. District changes sports complex focus |

Fraser Rec. District changes sports complex focus

Reid Armstrong
Sky-Hi Daily News
Grand County, CO Colorado

Byron Hetzler/Sky-Hi Daily News

With the completion of the Pole Creek Club House and the Grand Park Community Recreation Center under its belt, the Fraser Valley Metropolitan Recreation District is turning its sights to the third element of the original bond issue – the Fraser Valley Sports Complex.

When the community enhancement bond passed in 2007, voters approved $19.5 in funding for a new clubhouse, a new irrigation system for the 18-hole golf course, a new recreation center, and health and safety upgrades for the Fraser Valley Sports Complex.

Some $1.2 million remains from the original bond to upgrade the sports complex.

Two years ago, district officials discussed spending roughly $430,000 for a new bathroom/support facility and an additional $1.12 million to install water and sewer lines to and from the site to serve the bathrooms.

After three years of study, the rec district has found an alternative to installing water and sewer infrastructure that will free up money to allow it to pursue other projects.

“We realized that most of our water use was going to the ice rink,” said FVMRD parks and recreation director Scott Ledin. “We were actually exceeding our usage maintaining the ice rink. When we took the ice rink component out, and by employing some conservation measures, we discovered we could use our existing well to maintain the bathroom facility itself.”

Planned conservation measures include low flow toilets, waterless urinals, metered sinks and no outdoors hose bibs on the building, he said. The rec district also discovered that a mounded septic field could be installed north of the ballfields to handle wastewater from the bathrooms.

“We considered about eight different options for how to bring water from Fraser to the sports complex,” Ledin said. “We would have had to run the lines under the road, and with our budget, we maybe could have afforded to bring the water in, but the cost of the sewer line exceeded our budget.”

The rec district is now looking to purchase about 1 acre foot per year of augmentation water, using funding already within its budget, to continue filling and maintaining the ice rink.

It is also looking to use the money it saves by not installing the water and sewer infrastructure to move and replace the ice rink.

The existing ice rink is actually a flooded 75-by-150-foot, in-line rink that was built with a GOCO grant and community support in 1999. The proposed ice rink would be an uncovered, 85-by-200-foot, regulation-sized rink located directly behind the planned support building (see accompanying story). It would be designed so that it could be easily covered in the future if funding becomes available, Ledin said.

The 2,200-square-foot support building would include bathrooms, family bathrooms, a warming room/breezeway with a concessions/skate rentals window, an office space, storage and a garage for the Zamboni.

Ledin said the district is now looking to spend about $700,000 on the ice rink and support building combined, and $400,000 on the water augmentation plan, project management and installation of the septic system.

Ledin added that he plans to use the same conservative budgeting approach for this project as he did with the rec center. The budget will include a strong contingency fund, he said.

Requests for contractor qualifications were posted a few weeks ago and were due back to the rec district Tuesday. Ledin said he hopes to break ground on the project as soon as possible in the spring so that it can be completed next fall.

The sport complex, located on U.S. Highway 40 north of Fraser, was built in 1996 with community support, donations and in-kind labor. It supports youth and adult baseball, softball and soccer leagues in addition to summer community events such as the Fourth of July.

– Reid Armstrong can be reached at 970-887-3334 ext. 19610 or