Yampa Avenue sidewalk projected to cost $508K
City’s Public Works Department will work with Landmark Consultants, LLC out of Steamboat Springs on redesign
It’s unclear how long the sidewalk project on the 400 and 500 blocks of Yampa Avenue will take in 2021 or how businesses will be affected, but what is clear is that the city is planning on sprucing up Yampa Avenue, making the long stretch of sidewalks ADA compliant while providing a welcoming feel to Craig’s historic downtown.
During a Public Works Department Zoom meeting Wednesday morning, City Councilor Andrea Camp stated that city received a $308,535 grant for project, which will focus on improvements to the sidewalk, lighting, and landscape for the 400 and 500 blocks of Yampa Avenue.
“Our focus of this project from the beginning was to identify outside sources of grant funding to ensure that the project would allow us to develop an attractive, quality, finished product that Craig deserves for its residents and visitors,” Camp said.
Camp added the project hopes to add drip system irrigation for flowers and trees to reduce labor requirements long-term to add to the freshness and attraction to main street.
According to City Road & Bridges Director Trevor Campbell, the Public Works Department will work with Landmark Consultants, LLC out of Steamboat Springs on the final design of the project.
Erik Griepentrog, a partner with Landmark, stated that the design company is looking to add some “sizzle” to the project, hopefully incorporating a design on the sidewalk, while adding bumpouts and banner poles downtown to help welcome residents and visitors to the downtown district.
“The poles could be used for community announcements, welcoming people to Craig, and giving the community a chance to create another way to greet visitors and inform residents,” Griepentrog said.
According to Griepentrog, Landmark is on track with the design for the project and is doing its best to stay within a tight budget.
“We’re trying to make sure this thing can fit inside the allocated budget that the city did a great job setting aside and securing a grant for,” he added.
Despite being on track with the design, which includes ideas of new trees downtown with grates surrounding the bases, repainted light poles with LED lighting, and more, Landmark was quick to point out that it’s unclear when the construction would start on the project, which could take much of 2021 to complete.
The lack of a full plan had some business owners concerned.
Kirstie McPherson, the owner of The Find and the Wine Bar along Yampa Avenue, expressed concerns about the disruption construction and limited access could cause to downtown businesses — which struggled through much of 2020 — to struggle even more through no fault of their own.
Griepentrog stated the design team will work closely with the contractors to ensure access is clear to each storefront and that the disruptions are kept to as minimal as possible.
“Construction, when it does occur, is going to be impactful to traffic, residents, and business owners,” Griepentrog said. “We’re going to work closely with the contractors to make sure things are as considerate as possible to business owners.”
Campbell added that the city will work with the contractors to accommodate all downtown events throughout the spring and summer so that the community can come out and enjoy the yearly events.
Moving forward, Campbell said the city would like to have a point-person with Downtown Business Association to communicate with, and that the project would provide updates to keep the community informed.
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After 10 years in the Yampa Valley, the Colorado Crane Conservation Coalition, which is dedicated to the conservation and protection of greater Sandhill cranes in Colorado, has much to celebrate in addition to its anniversary.