Dillon signs off on $1.2 million in Town Park improvements
Dillon is set to jump into Town Park improvements later this summer, beginning with significant upgrades to the roadways and parking lots surrounding the area.
The Dillon Town Council unanimously passed a resolution during their regular meeting on Tuesday night awarding a contract to Columbine Hills Concrete to complete work on the roadways around the Dillon Town Park, located in the town’s core adjacent to Town Hall.
The project comes as the first phase of the Dillon Town Park Master Plan adopted in 2014, and the bulk of the work will take place on Buffalo Street and La Bonte Street, to the south and east of the park respectively. While the upgrades may not be the most flashy, officials say phase one will help set the stage for even bigger improvements in the coming years.
“Obviously you need to have all that infrastructure in place,” said Scott O’Brien, Dillon’s public works director. “We’ve never had good dedicated parking, water facilities and all the necessary utilities in place there. Things will look tore up for a while, but that infrastructure has to go in the ground first. Next year we really hope to move forward with the stuff everyone wants to see.”
The scope of work includes the resurfacing of Buffalo Street between Lake Dillon Drive and La Bonte Street, a move that will cover a number of patches left on the road during construction work last year. The existing parking lot on the south side of the park will be demolished and rebuilt, moving further into the park to create more room on the road. Additionally, a median will be constructed between the new parking lot and Buffalo Street, with more parallel parking spaces planned for the south side of the median to allow better access to businesses.
Concrete Hills will also be responsible for creating new sidewalks on the north side of Buffalo Street, complete with an ADA accessible ramp.
The work on La Bonte Street will be similar. The parking lot along the east side of the park will be demolished and rebuilt further into the park’s boundaries. A median will also be put in place between the upgraded parking lot and the roadway.
Since the town is pushing the La Bonte parking lot into the park, the southern tennis courts will have to be moved. At Tuesday’s meeting, the town council awarded an $80,344 contract to Stan Miller, Inc. to remove the courts. The town also entered into a $148,700 contract with Renner Sports Surfaces last month for the reconstruction of the courts to the southwest of their current location. Town staff anticipates the removal and reconstruction of the courts will begin next week and be completed in July.
O’Brien said the removal of the court was also necessary in preparing for future phases of the parks plan, which will create a new entrance on the east side of the park with walking space between the tennis courts.
In addition to roadwork and parking upgrades, the park improvement project includes the installation of a new sewer main tap into the park to connect to existing bathrooms and future water needs. The project also includes the completion of the area’s storm sewer system by extending the existing system — built last fall from Lake Dillon Drive into the park — all the way to La Bonte Street and north along the tennis courts. Finally, the town will be installing a transformer to help address future power needs at the park.
The park will be open during construction, and anyone looking to visit should park at town hall, on the side street along La Bonte or on Lake Dillon Drive.
The project looks like it will cost more than originally estimated. The town budgeted $750,000 for park improvements in 2019, but only received a single bid for the project from Columbine Hills Concrete for just over $1 million. Including the tennis court removal, the entire project will cost about $1.2 million in total. In order to meet the difference, the town is expected to pull additional funds from other projects on the town’s 2019 capital improvements budget, including almost $300,000 from the street overlay budget and $100,000 in funds set aside for the Lodgepole Street stairway replacement, which is being temporarily suspended.
The roadway improvements are only step one in the town’s plans for the park. Future phases of the plan include the entrance along La Bonte, a multi-use field and a new playground. The town is already working on a Great Outdoors Colorado grant to help fund further park projects.
“When we’re done I think the community is going to be really proud of what we’ve done, and that their involvement resulted in such a great space for the community,” said O’Brien.
Columbine Hills Concrete expects to begin work on the park improvement project on June 25, and anticipates finishing by the end of September.
“This has been a community effort, and we’re really excited to be ushering this new amenity to the town of Dillon,” said Kerstin Anderson, Dillon’s marketing and communications director.
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