Granby receives $355,000 grant for Raffety Park upgrades
Raffety Park in Granby, located on West Diamond Ave. next to the Soccer Dome, will soon see extensive upgrades and improvements to the park’s amenities and facilities.
The work is being made possible through a grant from Great Outdoors Colorado (GOCO) totaling roughly one-third of a million dollars. Late last week the GOCO Board officially announced their plans to award the Town of Granby with a $335,000 grant for the express purpose of developing Raffety Park.
Officials from Granby and those within the Granby Recreation Department have been working for several years to secure funding for improvements to Raffety Park. Granby Recreation Director Julie Martin has spent upwards of half a decade already fundraising for the project, which has an expected overall cost of roughly $1.1 million. Work at Raffety Park will be broken down into separate phases with the GOCO grant funds being applied to Phase 1.
Among the improvements and projects planned for Raffety Park in Phase 1 are playground facilities, a fitness station, an environmental education classroom, picnic areas and a partial trail, which will connect both East Grand Middle School and Indian Peaks Charter School to the park.
The park will also undergo curb and gutter work, landscaping and will see a dedicated parking lot constructed in the area between the existing tennis courts and modular building on the property. The parking lot will be asphalt paved.
Rec Director Martin explained the landscaping work for the park will focus on native seed grasses and design elements that attempt to evoke a “natural” look.
Martin also has plans to meet with local elementary and middle school students this fall to get a better idea of the playground equipment designs the kiddos are interested in seeing installed. “I want to get some guidance as to what exactly they want,” Martin said. The park’s playground equipment would be divided into two separate areas, one for very young children in the two to five years of age range and another area for older kids ages five and up.
The environmental education classroom planned for the park will serve dual purposes. The classroom will provide local Granby teachers with an easily accessible outdoor space to conduct classes if they want, but will also serve as a partially enclosed picnic area when not being used as a classroom.
In Phase 2 officials from Granby plan to complete a fitness loop trail around the entire park and add in two more outdoor fitness stations and begin working on creating an outdoor soccer field. Martin pointed out that Phase 2 of the project is not included with the GOCO grant. Raffety Park already boasts an outdoor tennis court and the indoor soccer field in the soccer dome.
Currently, Rafferty Park is little more than a dirt and gravel field crisscrossed with deep erosion trenches formed from spring runoff but officials hope to begin changing that very soon. “We will start on construction documents as soon as the grant agreement is signed,” Martin said. “I would love to have dirt work done by this fall.”
The GOCO grant for the work at Raffety Park is provided on a reimbursement basis by GOCO for work completed. GOCO has given Granby an April 2018 deadline to finish the project, though Martin felt she could secure extensions if needed.
Raffety Park in Granby is so named for long time Grand County resident and former Granby Mayor Ed Raffety who was a champion of recreational amenities for the community. Raffety passed away on Jan. 1 last year.
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A crane hoisted a 32,000-pound caboose into the air and brought it to its new home at Moffat Road Railroad Museum in Granby.