Mountain Briefs

Rec Path scheduled to re-open Friday
After several weeks of construction, the recreation path between Crested Butte and Mt. Crested Butte should be open this Friday. The path is maintained by the town of Mt. Crested Butte, and repairs are being conducted on a low bridge that crosses some wetlands near the Slate River. Originally, the town anticipated having the path re-open earlier this week, but according to town manager Joe Fitzpatrick, there were soil conditions that required the delivery of additional materials. The town of Mt. Crested Butte has also been busy repairing the rail fence between the wetlands bridge and Moon Ridge Lane. The fence was badly damaged following last winter’s big snowfall. Fitzpatrick says the new fence will be stronger than the existing fence; most of its cost is covered in the town’s 2009 budget.



DDA awaits results of recreation center feasibility study
The Mt. Crested Butte Downtown Development Authority (DDA) hopes to have a good idea of the features the town can afford to put in its proposed aquatic recreation center with a financial study that should be complete by year’s end. Town manager Joe Fitzpatrick told the DDA board on Monday, October 6 that consulting firm Ballard King Associates had been hired to conduct the financial feasibility study. He said the study was intended to determine what features the town could afford to operate in the long term, rather than what it can afford to build. Currently, Fitzpatrick said, the consultants were examining the demographics of the Gunnison Valley to determine which features would be popular and what would draw people to the aquatic center. “If it is a good aquatic recreation center it will attract some people from Gunnison,” Fitzpatrick said.
Since the city of Gunnison is building a new swimming pool at their recreation center, DDA member Al Smith asked if the facilities would be different. “What features will we have versus what Gunnison is doing with their pool? Are we going to have more fun, play aquatic features?” Smith asked.
Fitzpatrick said Gunnison would be building several pool slides, but was focused on building a lap pool. “It’s not going to have a zero entry feature or the play features we’ve really been driving at,” he said. Fitzpatrick said the consultant would send some preliminary data in the next few weeks, but the completed study may not be ready until the end of the year.
Mountain Sports Team may call yurt home
The newly formed Crested Butte Mountain Sports Team hopes to use the green yurt near the resort’s main parking lot as a base of operations. CBMR planning director John Sale and Mountain Sports Team supervisor Drew Cesati came before the Downtown Development Authority on Monday to request the DDA’s support.
Sale briefly introduced the student sports program and the need for the yurt. “They want to use that as kind of their warming house, locker rooms and training area,” he said. Sale said they would need to go before the planning commission and town council to secure a temporary conditional use approval. Since the yurt is in the DDA’s boundaries, Sale said there was some question as to whether the yurt met the DDA’s design guidelines. He said they were looking for a letter of support from the DDA to help secure the town’s approval. CBMR owns the yurt, which has sat vacant for several years.
Cesati said he was working with the old Crested Butte Ski Club and Crested Butte Community School in preparing the team’s programs and schedules. “One of the barriers has been finding a place to congregate,” he said. Cesati said the yurt was a great location, and having a facility near the slopes but outside of the immediate base area would help resolve security concerns, and give the team a feeling of personal space.
He said midweek the yurt would be used during the afternoons by a maximum of 15 students. On weekends, Cesati said, there could be 50 student athletes using the yurt throughout the day. He said CBMR’s security would add the yurt to their patrol route.
DDA member Al Smith said the yurt was looking kind of run-down and asked if there could be some visual improvements.
Cesati said they had invoiced plans for some upgrades, but were waiting for approval to move forward.
DDA member Chip Christian supported the idea. “I think the more activity we have down there the better,” he said.
The DDA voted unanimously to send a letter in support of the project but members Sara Morgan and Wendy Fisher, who serve on the town’s Planning Commission and Town Council, respectively, stepped down.

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