Nederland DDA Reviews NedPed Project

Nederland DDA Reviews NedPed Project
Pam North

Nederland-CO-Downtown2The Nederland Downtown Development Authority (NDDA) convened on Tuesday evening, Aug. 21, first for a work session at 5:30 p.m. The work session covered various topics for discussion, such as participation in Town events, Christmas lights, crosswalk issues, the Highway 119 and Lakeview intersection and a possible second bridge.
After the work session, the Downtown Development Authority NDDA met at 6:30 p.m. Town Treasurer Forberger gave her financial report and explained highlights of the 2014 budget schedule. A Request for Proposals (RFP) for DDA-specific legal services had been circulated, with no response, and it was agreed to circulate the RFP in additional venues.
An update on the recreational marijuana ordinance that had been the subject of the Aug. 20, 2013, Board of Trustees (BOT) meeting was given by Chris Perret. As it stands, five established marijuana businesses may obtain recreational marijuana licenses.
Selection for NDDA attendees to the Annual Downtown Colorado, Inc., (DCI) conference was discussed. DCI is a nonprofit organization committed to building better communities by providing assistance to Colorado downtowns, commercial districts and town centers, and helping local governments in their efforts to support small businesses and grow a sustainable economy. The 2013 event is scheduled for Sept. 10 to 13 in Grand Junction. Katrina Harms will attend the conference.
Christmas lighting in Nederland was discussed, with the Development Authority agreeing to participate. The Dec.18 regular meeting was moved forward to Dec. 11 to accommodate the NedPed schedule and the holidays.
Brian McLaren of Huitt-Zollars, Inc., and Conor Merrigan of C2 Sustainability, presented the 90 percent NedPeds Design Document with the latest information on the NedPed project. NedPed, Nederland Pedestrian Enhancement Design, is a project focusing on providing safe, non-vehicular connections from the current downtown area to the area between the post office and the library.
It will enhance that corridor through storm water management, landscaping, pedestrian amenities, provide for the installation of additional crosswalks and other features for the benefit of economic development and sustainability. The project is adjacent to North Beaver Creek and will facilitate the quality of the creek corridor.
A set of recommended design options from the sustainability consultant include surface materials, drainage system and possible incorporation of public art. One of the most significant aspects of the project is the creation of a system for cleaning and infiltrating storm water.
As opposed to traditional street and path design where the surface material is laid over compacted dirt, this system will allow for infiltration through a gravel medium. It is hoped that this will help with the flooding issues and clean up the water that goes into the stream and reservoir.
Outstanding issues with the design aspects of the NedPeds project have been identified, including all of the major design options and recommendations, each of which was discussed at length, and questions which arose were answered.
According to Conor Merrigan, the 90 percent design includes several key points for the project: “1) The overall design increases drainage underneath the surface with a gravel layer for drainage and infiltration back into the ground. There is drainage to the creek wherever possible to replicate the natural flows of water and existing drainage elements (pipes, etc.) are restored to functionality as much as possible;
“2) The non-roadway or pathway areas are planned to be gravel for parking and infiltration and native grasses and similar features to protect the watershed and slow rain water in the areas too small for parking;
“3) The design includes a textured, recycled concrete pathway with through-cuts at the joints to allow for water infiltration along the entire pathway. From the Park-n-Ride to the roundabout it is a five-foot path with a three-foot bike lane; from the roundabout to Snyder it is an eight-foot pathway, and from Snyder to East Street it is an eight-foot pathway adjoining a new hard-surface roadway, currently planned to be made of interlocking, porous concrete pavers; up Snyder Street.; and up East Street to the bus stops will be the eight-foot pathway.”
Biomimicry, the copying or imitation of an environment’s natural efficiency, is considered to be an important element of the NedPed project. Parking concerns, impacts on specific properties and concrete entrances for existing driveways were discussed, and a few minor changes were made to accommodate various points that were brought up during the course of the presentation.
The next regular meeting of the Nederland Downtown Development Authority is scheduled for Wednesday, Sept. 18, at 6:30 p.m. at the Nederland Community Center.