Citation
Parks and open space study : town of Meeker, Colorado and environs

Material Information

Title:
Parks and open space study : town of Meeker, Colorado and environs
Creator:
Walker, Steven Patrick
Place of Publication:
Denver, CO
Publisher:
University of Colorado Denver
Publication Date:
Language:
English

Thesis/Dissertation Information

Degree:
Master's ( Master of landscape architecture)
Degree Grantor:
University of Colorado Denver
Degree Divisions:
College of Architecture and Planning, CU Denver
Degree Disciplines:
Landscape architecture

Record Information

Source Institution:
University of Colorado Denver
Holding Location:
Auraria Library
Rights Management:
Copyright Steven Patrick Walker. Permission granted to University of Colorado Denver to digitize and display this item for non-profit research and educational purposes. Any reuse of this item in excess of fair use or other copyright exemptions requires permission of the copyright holder.

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Full Text
PARKS AND OPEN SPACE STUDY
WN OF MEEKER, COLORADO ~ ID ENVIRONS
LD
1190
?£i PARED FOR THE EASTERN RIO BLANCO W347 JNTY PARKS AND RECREATION EMISSION


PAFKS AND OPEN SPACE STUDY
TOWN OF MEEKER, COLORADO AND ENVIRONS
3 1204
00255 5515
Prepared for the Eastern Rio Blanco County Parks and Recreation Commission May 1981
ENVIRONMENTAL DESIGN
aurar/a library
JPt'8Z*
THESIS PROJECT Steven Patrick Walker
This study was prepared as thesis project in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Landscape Architecture, College of Environmental Design, University of Colorado at Denver
Submittal Date: 15 May 1981


*
â–º
k
FUNDING
r
iThis project was funded by the Division of Impact Assistance, State Department pf Local Affairs under a contract with the Town of Meeker.
)ooperating partners in the development and carrying out of the project include :he Town of Meeker, the Division of Impact Assistance,the Western Colorado Rural lommunities Program, the Center for Community Development and Design, University if Colorado at Denver.
CKNOWLEDGMENTS * *
i addition the author would like to thank the following individuals for eir generous and timely assistance in the preparation of this study.
* William B. Bohnhoff, A.S.L.A., professional advisor
* Lynn Murphy, coordinator, CCDD
* Robert Myers, chairman, Eastern Rio Blanco County Parks and Recreation Commission
* Dan Schler, professor, UCD
* Jon Schler, Division of Impact Assistance, Department of Local Affairs, State of Colorado


TABLE OF CONTENTS
INTRODUCTION

Proposal
Intention of Study Clients
Project Organization Analysis Factors Primary Focus of Study Assumptions Recommendation-Making Language
Problem Definition/Needs Assessment
REGIONAL ANALYSIS
Introduction to the Region [Rapid Change Existing Situation Meeker Terrace Proposal County Planning Policy County Growth Guide County Zoning
Icounty Subdivision Regulations [Environmental Constraints [Environmental Opportunities ieeker Terrace Analysis Regional Open Space Planning Regional Open Space Concept Recommendations
COMMUNITY ANALYSIS
["own Zoning
toncept Meeker 8000
[own Subdivision Regulations
element in Land-Use Plan
facility Analysis
[own Analysis
heeker Terrace Analysis
[oncept Development
[own Concept 1
[own Concept 2
[own Concept 3
lecommendations
3
4
5 7 9
10
11
12
13
14
18
21
21
22
23
24
25
26 28 31
33
34
36
37
40
41 43
45
46
47
48 50
52
53
54
55
ii


PARK DESIGN £age
Development Goals and Objectives 60
Design Goals and Objectives 60
Site Facility Programming 61
Problems/Potentials 62
Schematic Design R
Design Details 63
APPENDIX


JDEX TO MAPS AND PLANS
lysis Factors A
nty Growth Guide B
nty Zoning Implications C
ironmental Constraints D
ironmental Opportunities E
ker - Meeker Terrace Relationship F
ional Open Space Concept G
n Zoning H
ker Concept Plan I
ility Analysis J
n Analysis K
n Concept 1 L
k System Development Plan 1 M
t Concept 2 N
k System Development Plan 2 0
i Concept 3 P
k System Development Plan 3 Q
thills Neighborhood Park R


INTRODUCTION


QUOTES
* The best community...is that which provides the best environment for the experience of living.
* "Planners, to be effective, must not be imposed from above on the premise that the planners know what's good for the planned. The small minority whose job it is to prepare the plan must find out not only what can in fact be technically achieved, but what it is the planned want."
Cecil Stewart, The Prospect of Cities, London, 1952
"The best plan...is one that recognizes its limitation in itself; that planning for everything includes freedom from the plan as one of the greatest things to plan for."
Percival and Paul Goodman, Communities University of Chicago Press, Chicago, 1947
"Nothing great was ever achieved without enthusiasm."
Ralph Waldo Emerson


PROPOSAL
The original proposal for this study and a brief summary proposal can be y found in the appendix of this document. As well as being an academic requirement, this proposal represented the best possible interpretation at the time of its writing of the scope and needs of this study based upon the student's and the clients' understanding.
For those unfamiliar with the original proposal, problem definition, needs [assessment and background information, please refer to the proposal in the appendix.
What follows is the application of this proposal to the real situation at [hand. The very nature and philosophy and most importantly, the process em-Iployed in this study, is one of inherent flexibility and response to diverse, Ichanging and complex human needs. A comparison of the original proposal and Ithe final product will yield a clear picture of the student's and clients' Iresponse to these changing human needs and increasing public awareness and linvolvement.
Phis comparison of proposal and product, or more importantly, process, will serve as an effective evaluation tool in terms of the original technical in-:ention of the study and its application. Just as important, the study will lelp in the identification of new understandings and awarenesses gained by responding to public/human needs in an impacted community experiencing un-jsual and significant social and physical problems.


INTENTION OF STUDY
This study is a continuing step in both a short and long term process of developing a comprehensive parks, open space and recreation master plan for the Town of Meeker and eastern Rio Blanco County. The specific intention is to evaluate and aptly use all previously developed recreation and land use planning data and put this information into physical form for the purposes of discussion, evaluation, review and revision.
It is the intention of the project to provide enough suggested direction and specific recommendations to provide a future course of action. At the same time, and equally importantly, the study is a means of attempting to address specific human needs, and problems and to demonstrate opportunities and constraints to dealing with these needs and problems. Part of this problem and its solution is one of providing a clear awareness of a total community development and land use planning process of which this study is but a part.
In short, this study is meant to be an education for both its author and the clients and ultimate users of parks and open spaces. It is meant to generate ideas, to show how problems can become potentials and to provide a conceptual framework making day-to-day operational decisions and long range park, open space and recreation decisions easier and more logical. It is meant to result in positive action.
As explained in the proposal, the primary context of this study is the need for planning and design assistance in energy impacted communities, of which Meeker is but one. It is also the need for public involvement, long range community development process and intensive recreation, parks and open space planning in a high-growth community where social needs become central.
This study is not a parks and open space plan for Meeker and eastern Rio Blanco County. It is not a physical plan that is high delineated and accompanied by a set of clearly defined goals, objectives and policies that are to be formally adopted by the town council and planning commission of eeker and the Eastern Rio Blanco County Parks and Recreation Commission, or an outside consultant, working part-time, to attempt such an effort in 4-month period, would be beyond a reasonable scope of services.
eeker and eastern Rio Blanco County have a complex history of studies, plans, utside assistance, projections, etc. and have become rightfully cautious of ore surveys, studies and plans. Such studies lack any really substance ithout community leadership, public involvement, concern and enthusiasm rom all sectors influences in any way by such efforts and decisions. It is he intention of this study to be sensitive to this planning history and to elp foster enthusiasm for the ongoing development of a superior parks, open pace and recreation plan based on human need, constantly changing problems nd true public involvement.


CLIENTS
Ostensibly the primary client for this project is the Eastern Rio Blanco County Parks and Recreation Commission who is mandated with initiating and managing the development for parks and recreation within eastern Rio Blanco County centering on Meeker. The Commission thus acts as the coordinating agency.
To be truly significant and effective such a planning effort should also involve: 1) the Meeker Town Council; 2) the Meeker Planning Commission;
3) the Rio Blanco County Department of Development; 4) the Northwest Regional Council of Governments; 5) the Bureau of Land Management; 6) the Department of Energy; 7) the energy companies; 8) the Department of Local Affairs (state); 9) additional federal and state agencies and any special interest groups who chose to participate. The list could go on. It would be a difficult accomplishment to coordinate these groups effectively and many in Meeker and the County have tried at various levels of scale and with varying degrees of success in the past.
But who is this study really for? This study is for all those people who use and appreciate the qualities of life afforded by parks, open spaces and recreational opportunities. It is for those people who need and would use these amenities now and for those people to come. It is for the resident and the future resident. It is for the visitor. It is for the young and the old. Simply, it is for the PEOPLE and their special and diverse needs. This is why public involvement at all levels is essential.


DESIGN AND PLANNING PROCESS


PROJECT ORGANIZATION
There is a detailed account of the project organizaton in the proposal in the proposal in the appendix to this document. It is briefly summarized here.
INITIAL RESEARCH: This was a preparatory period previous to the writing of the formal proposal and involved initial meetings with the client, town and 'county planning officials and included general field inspections.
FORMAL PROPOSAL: Following the initial research was the preparation of the formal proposal which involved a determination and analysis of the needs assessment as presented to the author, refined problem definition and project organization.
PLANNING BACKGROUND: As part of the proposal preparation and regional and town analysis, the author also investigated the existing planning and growth plans and documents available as a means of understanding the context within which this study lies.
REGIONAL ANALYSIS: The study area for the purposes of this study was deter-
mined to be an area of approximately 40 square miles surrounding Meeker.
The primary concerns at the regional scale were: 1) growth trends related to Meeker; 2) existing county and town regional planning; 3) regional environmental opportunities and constraints and; 4) general regional qualities that would affect both regional and town park, open space and recreation lanning.
rPWN ANALYSIS: The study then moved from the regional scale to the Town of
Meeker incorporating the important elements identified at the regional scale, rhe analysis elements at the town scale included existing zoning, planning ind concept growth guide information as well as an analysis of existing and possible future facilities and a town-scale design analysis.
|>ARK DESIGN: In addition, a conceptual design was prepared for the 12th street neighborhood park as the park is ready to be constructed at the [resent time. The design fits into the framework established at the town Jcale and also begins to explore design and construction methods and Materials that may be utilized in other town parks.
7


PROJECT ORGANIZATION
INITIAL RESEARCH FORMAL PROPOSAL PLANNING BACKGROUND REGIONAL OPEN SPACE TOWN PARK SYSTEM PLANNING
•ARK DESIGN


ANALYSIS FACTORS
At its simplest level there were seven major analysis factors utilized in the planning and design process of this study:
1) SOCIAL NEED: The current and future park and recreation needs analysis was in the final steps of revision at the start of this project. It was the result of a 7-month effort involving a recreation study and the appli cation of national recreation standards to assumed population projections for Meeker and eastern Rio Blanco County. That study in conjunction with this study shall lay the framework for a comprehensive master plan for open space, parks and recreation for eastern Rio Blanco County. The recreation needs analysis, although constantly changing and in a state of re vision, was essentially complete at the start of this project and is utilized throughout.
2) PLANNING CONTEXT: As previously mentioned an analysis was made of both regional and town plans, regulations and documents as a means of understanding the planning and community development framework for this study.
3) DEVELOPMENT PATTERNS: The primary consideration here was the anticipated and encouraged directions of growth most likely to occur adjacent to Meeker. Based upon anticipated (though speculative) population projections for Meeker and eastern Rio Blanco County and the proposed Meeker Terrace planned unit development, certain important determinants of town and regional park planning were identified.
4) DESIGN CONSIDERATIONS: Essential to the actual development of concepts and plans for regional open space, town park system planning and park design was an analysis of certain design factors and considerations that provided the basis for the development of the concepts. Several of these
j considerations are presented throughout the course of this study.
5) ENVIRONMENTAL OPPORTUNITIES: An analysis was made identifying all primary environmental opportunities for park, open space and recreation planning and design at both the regional and town scales.
E) ENVIRONMENTAL CONSTRAINTS: An analysis was made identifying the most I important environmental constraints to park, open space and recreation I planning and design at both the regional and town scales. At the
I regional scale existing information was available from the county.
V) PUBLIC INVOLVEMENT: Although extensive public involvement was not possi-I ble in this project due to its brevity, logistical constraints and the I present community status, the author encouraged public involvement from I the start. The author met and presented at both recreation commission I and public meetings.
fhe importance of public involvement and the development of community leader-Bhip within the community development process cannot be overemphasized.
â– â– here are a wide range of methods and techniques for initiating, encouraging Ind managing public participating and different methods are best for lifferent situations. Public involvement can slow plans and actions down lut ultimately results in plans and actions that have been agreed to by lonsensus and are most likely to succeed.


*IMARY FOCUS OF STUDY
\
;er and Rio Blanco County are obviously in a state of constant flux and ige. There are planning and design problems and opportunities at every le from the region down to a specific park site within the town. It is 'icult to weave open space and park planning and design into a less than luate comprehensive land use plan especially with such diversity of opinion changing recreational and social needs.
;he process of doing such a study, one becomes inmediately aware of all the ;r shortcomings and obstacles within which such a study and ultimately a
1 is supposed to operate. Problems tend to pyramid.
to the complexities of the problems as presented in the proposal and the
2 limitation of the consultant, constraints were to be placed on the scope vork in this project. This is explained more fully in the proposal. This iy was highly focused and deals with a limited set of issues. It is neither iible to investigate only the planning and implementation realm as a planning ;ultant might nor is it possible to approach the problems and opportunities
f as a landscape architect avoiding the planning implementation and finan-
1 realities. Both needed to be combined.
lust be immediately recognized that not all planning and design considera-is could be brought into this study. It would not be possible. Things
2 omitted by choice, others by accident.
primary focus of this study was to take existing land use planning and "eation data and show possible physical plan alternatives for park and open :e design and development. This was a design-based study and in reviewing 2vant background data, only that information directly relevant to these ign decisions was analyzed and utilized. That focus was necessary and will jit in the most appropriate product possible given the practical constraints.


ASSUMPTIONS
consultant will make every attempt to be accurate and thorough basing in-nation on the best data available at the time. Information will be veri-d whenever possible.
ever, due to the brevity of the project, the focus of its scope, the lack some information and the diversity of opinion about population projections financing, it will be necessary to make assumptions based on best judg-ts and information. No doubt not all the assumptions will be or could be pletely correct and will be subject for discussion and review. This is as should be. The assumptions will then serve to help clarify issues further hopefully speed up the process of goal-setting and implementation.
e this to be a final master plan for parks and open space, making unfounded umptions would be a serious concern. This is not such a plan and the umptions became necessary vehicles for discussion and review.


RECOMMENDATIONS
â– In addition to the development of the concepts and plans in this study, the consultant will make additional observations and recommendations. These recommendations will 1) appear in the narrative, 2) be summarized or encapsulated at certain points within the narrative, and 3) appear in the report summary at the beginning of the document.


LANGUAGE
Certain words are repeatedly used in this document and for the sake of clarity, they shall be defined here for the purposed of this study. They are used differently in various other studies.
Goals: These are statements expressing the ideal result hoped for.
- They are statements indicating the highest social or functional
values or priorities and are based upon problem definition and â–º needs assessment. They can be very functional or more general-
ized statements of purpose,
Dbjectives: These are statements derived from more general goals, that express specific needs to be fulfilled. They do not necessarily address the solution, but more importantly, the need. They should be specific enough to be measurable, observable or explicit and they should be achievable and testable. They should be important, discriminating and prioritized and lead to yet leave flexibility in problem solving. Objectives are the basis for decision-making.
olicies: Policies are statements of a specific course of action adopted
and pursued in attaining goals or achieving objectives. There are "policies plans" that essentially consist of such policy statements. They are specific recommendations for action and are usually formally and legally adopted by sanctioned organizations.
riteria: These are specific mandatory requirements derived from object-
ives and policies.
idelines: These are specific voluntary recommendations derived from objectives and policies.


PROBLEM DEFINITION
.A detailed description of the problems identified within the scope of services of this project may be found in the proposal in the appendix to this document. In addition, larger scale problems that affect the context of this study, but are beyond its scope, are also addressed,
NEEDS ASSESSMENT
I
For the past year and a half the Eastern Rio Blanco County Parks and Recreation Commission with the aid of consultants has been preparing the Eastern Rio Blanco County Parks and Recreation Master Plan. At the beginning of this project this plan was in the final stages of review and revision and was completed shortly thereafter.
In brief, this master plan includes a description of the community, demographic information, an inventory of existing facilities, programs and management, the results of a recreation demand survey, recreation standards and criteria, parks and recreation requirements and implementation strategies.
The most important information from this master plan for the purpose of this study is the determination of parks and recreation requirements. The background information in the master plan provides an excellent framework for the determination of requirements, but the requirements themselves provide the ■specific programming elements necessary to develop the open space and park system concepts which are the intention of this study. The concepts developed in this study accommodate these facility requirements. The following table ■•lists the facility requirements as identified in the master plan by activity type.
14


* -EASTERN RIO BLANCO COUNTY RECREATION FACILITY REQUIREMENTS
I Activity Type Short-Term (Immediate) Requirements Medium-Term (To 11,500 Population) Requirements
â–ºSwimming 4 Conversion of the existing swimming pool to an indoor, year-round pool. Enlargement of existing pool or construction of an additional outdoor pool.
p Provision of amenities for outdoor pool activities.
Tennis Construction of two (2) lighted tennis courts. Construction of four (4) lighted additional tennis courts.
Jce Skating Improvement of one existing ice skating site. Enlargement of the ice skating site.
Outdoor Basketball Construction of two (2) regulation, lighted basketball courts. Improvements to existing courts.
Softball Development of two (2) lighted softball fields with supporting facilities Development of two (2) additional lighted softball fields.
Indoor Recreation Construction of an indoor recreation center to include: Two (2) handball/racquetball courts Exercise/weight equipment Exercise/Dance Room Ping Pong Tables Pool/Bi11iard Tables Locker Facilities Possible expansion of the facility to include a gymnasium
ommunity Park Expand the community park by eight acres, to a total of 18 acres. Develop an additional 40 acres of community park, for a total of 58 acres.
^ighborhood Parks Develop nine acres of neighborhood parks Develop an additional 20 acres of neighborhood parks for a total of 29 acres.
Dmmercial Recreation Movie Theatre (Indoor) Movie Theatre (Outdoor) Roller Skating Facility (Indoor) Miniature Golf Skateboard Park Nightclub


In addition to this list of needed facilities there is an additional aspect of *need not addressed here. It is one of specific concern to towns such as Meeker, towns facing potentially overwhelming growth. Recreation becomes especially ■important in areas experiencing intense growth. Many of the energy-related ‘workers arriving in the region are from more urbanized areas where organized ►recreation is provided and need similar facilities in eastern Rio Blanco County.
Experience has shown in other communities experiencing high growth, the lack *of park, open space and recreation amenities has resulted in social problems, delinquency, crime, etc.
A


REGIONAL ANALYSIS


IE REGION
; is a brief history of the physical and social development of Meeker and ;rn Rio Blanco County in the original proposal so there is no need to re-ite such history here.
;rms of park and open space design there are several natural features, icteristics and qualities that provide both opportunities and constraints lysical planning and design. Many of these same physical opportunities :onstraints obviously dictated the town's original location and subsequent opment across the surrounding terrain.
fic features immediately came to attention in terms of design:
i River: The river provides an unusual recreational and aesthetic
irce to the community and at the same time is a major obstacle to develop-
across to the south (whether desired or undesired).
)nal Context: Meeker and eastern Rio Blanco County abound with open i and recreational opportunities for the woodsman. Many physical and il needs are already fulfilled, but others within the community and ;y are not. The regional growth pressures that Meeker will face only ier compound the problems.
18


ipes, Mountains and Drainageways: Although Meeker sits within the White yer Drainage basin, with its essentially flat fertile agricultural flood'll’ n, the town is contrasted to the west and north by steeper slopes and ^ntains. Again these are both an amenity and a constraint to certain types development. Sulphur Creek and Anderson Gulch provide significant oppor-« 19


rid Landscape: The relatively flat, non-irrigated, arid land primarily to he east and northeast of the town represent another obvious opportunity for evelopment and recreation but also would provide complexities in coordinat-ng such recreation, parks and open space planning. This should obviously p of prime concern in reviewing the Meeker Terrace proposal, especially in ight of parks and open space planning. This proposal is looked at more losely subsequently in this study.
20


APID CHANGE
ker and eastern Rio Blanco County are being thrust forward with the pros-t of rapid growth. This creates many real and immediate design and plann-problems which are compounded by inadequate up-front assistance in terms money and staff. It is further compounded when planners and designers are er time pressure to produce and make specific, quick operational decisions en inadequate and inaccurate background information and constantly changing ds and desires. In addition public involvement at all stages is essential make any policy or plan really work.
ker and eastern Rio Blanco County can handle both the immediate and long-ge problems if: A) they rapidly develop a conceptual framework for land planning. This has essentially been attempted with the Meeker Concept 0 plan, and B) develop a sound, long-range, truly comprehensive planning, d use and design process that actively involves the public.
purpose of this study is to provide the rapid conceptual framework for a ks and open space system plan to provide for immediate needs as well as ating a sound framework for continuing work. It must be recognized that h work is of little value if not coordinated with an overall comprehensive nning process, both a short-range and long-range effort.
XISTING SITUATION
complete problem definition and needs assessment may be found in the pro-al section and will not be reiterated here. The consultant finds it to 11 be an accurate evaluation.
need for establishing an overall parks and open space framework quickly already been emphasized. It must be also emphasized that this is not a al plan but the outline of a process that incorporates suggestions and umptions always open to review and critical evaluation.
â–  example, the Meeker Terrace Proposal is at this time exactly that, a posal. However the possibility of its final acceptance and the signifi-t land planning and design and recreation planning considerations that Id come into play require it being seen as a reality in at least one con-t alternative of this study.
21


MEEKER TERRACE PROPOSAL
The Meeker Terrace project is a proposal for a 1,388 acre planned unit development 3/4 of a mile northeast of the Town of Meeker. The property is owned by Doyle and Everett Berry.
The proposal is an anticipated response to a projected housing and service demand to satisfy the needs of energy companies operating in the Piceance Creek Basin. Meeker's population has doubled in the last four years. The developers are anticipating a surge in housing demand as a result of Meeker's proximity to major oil shale and coal projects planned by several corporations and companies.
The accompanying map indicates the relative size and location of the Meeker Terrace project to present Meeker.
The tract represents the most logical direction for growth near Meeker as development is limited to the north and west by steep slopes and to the south by the White River floodplain and the Mesa. The project is not contiguous to the town and, therefore, cannot be annexed to the town until the invervening land ' is also annexed. Both the developer and the town government are in the opinion that this intervening land will soon be annexed permitting annexation of the Meeker Terrace properties. The developers of this project are Bar-70 Enterprises located outside of Meeker. Planning consultants for the project include Obiinger-McCaleb of Denver.
If the projected employment needs of the energy companies are accurate, Meeker will face a boomtown growth condition until the year 2000 with a population of 16,593 according to the Northwest Regional Council of Governments. The Meeker Terrace proposal, at the present time, accommodates 5,534 housing units with a potential population of 16,120. The project area could also expand to accommodate additional growth if necessary. The project includes 431 acres of open space, 25 acres for parks, 120 acres for schools, 8 acres public, 66 acres for light industrial, 80 acres of business, 110 acres of mobile homes (596 units),
193 acres of multi-family (2,726 units), 261 acres of single family clustered, etc. (1,480 units) and 173 acres of single family detached (732 units).
Currently, negotiations are in progress on the water and sewer systems. The developers feel that the project will go to construction within a year. Planning studies and additional design work are underway at this time.


COUNTY PLANNING POLICY
A master plan was prepared for Rio Blanco County by the Rio Blanco County
Planning Commission in 1976. Several of the policies and programs direct-â–  ly relate to and encourage coordinated park and recreation development.
The following are specific relevant policies with associated programs for
action.
1) "Coordinate County planning and zoning with that of the towns of Rangely and Meeker." This encourages a cooperative framework for
park and open space planning and also encourages or almost necessitates public involvement and coordination between agencies and commissions.
2) "Encourage development of less desirable agricultural lands when necessary for expanding urban areas or other development purposes."
This, in fact, says preserve prime agricultural lands from development. This could be an important criteria in determining open space goals and objectives.
3) "Avoid land use conflicts between existing airports and the expanding towns." This is of prime importance in evaluating the Meeker Terrace proposal and its relationship to the existing Meeker Airport. Also important is park and recreation planning within the PUD relative to the airport. The Meeker Airport is located directly in between Meeker and Meeker Terrace.
4) "Discourage development in natural hazard areas." This is only logical and reasonable from a standpoint of economics, health, safety and public welfare. The plan refers to floodplains specifically. There are others. This also has open space goal and objective implications as will be demonstrated later.
7) "Recognize, avoid or engineer for unsuitable soils." This has the same implications as the previous policy.
â– <}) "Preserve and enhance the existing economic base of the County in such areas as agricultural, tourism, recreation, hunting, fishing, wildlife, and visual amenities." In terms of programs, the County Planning Commission should, when applicable, have proposal review powers in regards to the adverse and positive aspects of development proposals that could affect the above policy. As well, they should encourage utilization of those valuable assets of the County. The implications for park and open space design and development in this policy at the regional, town and park site scale are obviously far-reaching and at one level extend beyond the scope of this study. Several of these issues will be dealt with in more detail later.
3) "Continue an active program of citizen involvement in the planning process. Utilize citizen advisory groups to continue a forum for citizen participation. This point has been adequately addressed previously. It is especial ly important with regards to park planning and design which must closely link with the real human needs.
1 though the plans and policies are designed to promote general quality land se control, the plan must be seen as an interim, process-level document.


COUNTY GROWTH GUIDE
In terms of evaluating possible development areas around Meeker, the County Master Plan clearly encourages eastern expansion as opposed to across the White River to the south.
In terms of general development as well as park planning and design the advantages and disadvantages of eastern and southern development are listed below. These are taken from the County Growth Guide.
Eastern Expansion Areas
Advantages:
* natural extension of utility systems
* good relationship to school systems
* non-irrigated land
* low visual impact on existing town
* suitable soils
Disadvantages:
* requires relocation of airport
* linear relationship to existing town/downtown
* through-town access to oil shale projects
Southern Expansion Areas Advantages:
* reinforces centrality of downtown
Disadvantages:
* major bridge(s) required
* opens White River floodplain for development
* major change in elevation/steep bluffs
* major utility costs
* irrigated agricultural land lost
* distance from schools
* high visual impact on town
* through town access to coal fields.
It should be understood that these considerations are for general development opportunities and constraints and not specifically parks and recreation but generally apply to many recreation facilities.
It should also be understood that what is a constraint to general development in one area may be a recreation opportunity at the same time and of course the opposite is also true.
The plan is a beginning to a cooperative relationship between the county, the recreation commission and the Town of Meeker for coordinated open space, park planning and design. The following sheet displays the County Growth Guide.
24


:OUNTY ZONING
ie following sheet indicates current county zoning surrounding Meeker nd some general notes and implications.
f primary concern in evaluating zoning implications is the determina-ion of what type of development is encouraged where and what impacts auld thus result.
5 can be seen on the map, much area is not zoned. It is interesting to ote that there is also not a clear connection between the growth guide and aning ordinance in terms of residential zoning. The growth guide favors astern expansion and yet a major residential area is zoned to the south f the river.
n general there is little county land-use control, the zoning ordinance is ermissive and there are large amounts of private holdings including ad-acent to the White River. There is no clear overall land use concept for aunty growth or town expansion as indicated by the ordinance. There is Iso no preservation or conservation zoning and the 0 or open zoning dis-ricted is utilized only in zoning the airport.
25


COUNTY SUB-REGS
Within the Rio Blanco County Subdivision Regulations there are several ordinances, goals and references directly applicable to the dedication and maintenance of parks and open space within county developments. The effectiveness of these requirements obviously lies within the review and revision powers of the County Planning Commission at the proposal phase of projects and the implementation and maintenance of such requirements within the subdivision or planned unit development.
Within section 401.3, the purpose of the regulations, several specific references are made to orderly, efficient and integrated land development, the promotion of the health, safety and general welfare of the residents, a concern for public improvement plans and programs, adequate design standards, the prevention of loss of life and injury from natural hazards and the necessity "to preserve natural vegetation and cover and promote the natural beauty of the country." These are specific references to design standards as well as general references to quality of life issues. Specific reference is made to the provision of adequate space for the future development of parks within the county.
Within the regulations for planned unit developments (PUD's), flexibility is encouraged for a more efficient allocation and maintenance of open space.
The PUD "shall not contain less than five (5) acres and regardless of size shall provide thirty (30) percent of the total area to be dedicated or reserved for 'open space1 land, exclusive of required parking and streets."
Within mountain subdivisions specific concern is raised in the mitigation of pollution, fire hazards and geologic hazards.
In dealing with all the subdivision types covered within these regulations, the proposal review process mandates the accurate mapping of all natural features as part of the official proposal review process.
Within section 406.10, Public Sites and Open Spaces, three specific ordinances directly relate to public use lands
1) Five (5) percent of the grass land area of the final plat shall be dedicated to the public for schools and parks. Any area so dedicated will be maintained by the County.
2) Five (5) percent of the gross land area of the final plat be reserved through deed restrictions as open space, the maintenance of which shall be ensured by specific obligations in the deed of each lot within the subdivision. This alternative shall not be utilized for PUD's.
3) Five (5) percent of the full market value of the gross land area in the final plat at the time of final plat submission, to be paid over by the subdivider to the Board, to be used by the Board for the acquisition and development of land and sites for schools and parks. . .
The county subdivision regulations set specific design standards for park and open space development as well as indicate general quality-of-1ife concerns.
If properly utilized, they are the basis for action for actual park designation and development as well as the establishment of criteria for county open -space designation.


p
If properly utilized, they are the basis for action for actual park designation and development as well as the establishment of criteria for county >pen space designation.
27


NVIRONMENTAL CONSTRAINTS
primary concern to the location and function of parks and recreation ilities and open space areas are those environmental constraints which e a threat of personal injury or property (structural) damage. Obvious-what may be an environmental constraint to general development may be an ironmental opportunity to recreational uses.
r constraints were investigated as being significant to park and open ce planning and design: steep slopes 100-year floodplain unstable slopes soils
se constraints are constraints to general development and were obtained ti the Rio Blanco Department of Development. They apply as constraints most structural recreation and park facilities.
EP SLOPES
as equal or in excess of 20% slope were mapped out. These areas would be ficult to build on without additional costs and problems. Generally these as are to the north and northwest of Meeker, much of it under BLM manage-t.
28


JO-YEAR FLOODPLAIN
ie 100-year floodplain for the White River and Sulphur Creek were also mapped, irt of this information was the result of an engineering study performed for le town and the remainder interpolated. Although expensive structural facili-^'es should not be placed within the floodplain, several recreational uses are opropriate. Informal parks, bikeways, paths and ballfields can be appropriate oodplain uses.
^STABLE SLOPES
â– eas subject to rockfall, potentially unstable slopes and landslides were also pped out. Such areas are unsuitable for intensive or structural development r obvious reasons, but may serve as a recreational amenity to back country es, wilderness trails, visual resources, etc.


OILS
oils information was not mapped as a majority of the soils in the study area ere found to be either subject to swelling or corrosive to steel or concrete, ark and recreation site development involving earthwork, drainage, foundations, tc. must be field checked and mitigated for these specific problems.
he following map graphically displays and summarizes this information.
30


ENVIRONMENTAL OPPORTUNITIES
Several regional and town features and characteristics were identified as opportunities in one form or another for park, open space and recreation development. These features are graphically displayed and summarized on the following map.
The White River: The river provides a visual, functional and recreational resource to the region as well as the community. It is an important distinguishing feature and provides many opportunities to park and recreation development.
Sulphur Creek: The creek provides an opportunity as an open space corridor and pedestrian connection to the north and the ponds are both a visual amenity as well as recreational opportunity.
Meeker Ditch: Meeker Ditch could provide the backbone of a trail system through town although such development would be difficult as the ditch runs •through backyards and under streets.
Floodplain: As mentioned previously, there are several appropriate uses for floodplains including: open space, informal parks, bikeways, paths and ballfields. The floodplain also acts as a visual amenity emphasizing the river corridor.


BLM Lands: The BLM lands to the north and west of town provide natural open space and backcountry uses and are a visual amenity to the town and region.
China Wal1: This geologic formation which really defines the edge of the BLM lands to the north and west of Meeker is an attractive visual resource and part of the character or quality of the community. It should be maintained as a visual resource.
Anderson Gulch: The gulch provides a natural break in the China Wall and pedestrian access from the town into the BLM lands to the northwest. This connection whould be maintained.
Meeker Dome: This geologic formation provides an identifiable feature and a vantage point to the town and region.
Rural Open Space: The vast amounts of open spaces surrounding the community and characteristic of the region provide the rural quality and historic natural setting of the town.
Views: There were found to be many significant views of the surrounding landscape, the river, the China Wall etc. from many points on the highways, within the community and from specific park sites.
As Meeker faces the possibility of extensive growth, the open space areas presently found adjacent to the community on both the west and east sides take an additional importance. These lands should be recognized for their visual, recreation and open space qualities and should not be precluded to housing development. The lands to the east of town on the intervening parcels between Meeker and the Meeker Terrace proposal area became especially important in terms of possible recreation uses, open space corridors, pedestrian and bikeway connections, etc.


MEEKER TERRACE ANALYSIS
The Meeker Terrace proposal is looked at as both a regional and town scale impact in terms of parks, open space and recreation planning. The magnitude of the anticipated development will have substantial influences on both the region and the town.
At the regional scale the proposed development would increase the population of the town by more than 7 times its present 2,400 to in excess of 16,120. There would also be a shift in population centers to the east and northeast of the present community. In addition, the intervening land would have to be annexed, permitting the annexation of Meeker Terrace, opening up additional land for development.
In terms of regional county land-use planning, the proposal area represents the logical direction for growth and is supported by the County Growth Guide.
Specific planning and design consideration regarding the PUD will be dealt with in the town analysis. However, at the regional scale, it is safe to say that the proposal would have a dramatic planning and design impact on parks and recreation as it essentially represents a new town center by virtue of its size and potential population. Its relationship to the existing community, in terms of physical and social cohesion, becomes critical and is dealt with in the town analysis.


OPEN SPACE PLANNING
* DEFINING OPEN SPACE
The words "open space" take on a variety of meanings to different people. The term open space does in fact have a range of meanings and implications. Obviously what is considered open space to someone living in a city is not likely similar to the perceptions of someone living in a small rural community sur-
» rounded by millions of acres of open space. Because land is maintained as open space says nothing of its productivity. Open space does not mean unused or devoid of human evidence. Any of a variety of uses including farming, ranching, mining, timbering and active and passive park and recreation development may be considered open space uses. An exact definition of open space use designations would be difficult and beyond the scope of this study. It is
/ the intention here to introduce the importance of the concept. The term is best thought of in terms of its function. Open space is a land use type that serves a variety of functions to Meeker and eastern Rio Blanco County.
i
FUNCTIONS OF OPEN SPACE * 2 3 4
â–  1) To maintain a rural atmosphere in eastern R1o Blanco County and Meeker and to maintain and enhance community identity: A great part of the appeal and attractiveness of eastern Rio Blanco County and Meeker is the rural, pastoral quality created by open space land uses.
2) To protect resources, both natural and man-made: Open space lands may be used to protect and manage timber, wildlife, mineral and energy resources,
P water, etc. In addition open space land-use designations may be used to protect man-made resources such as historic sites and buildings.
3) To maintain visual and aesthetic resources: The scenic environment of eastern Rio Blanco County 1s due in large part to the vast amounts of open space lands in public and private holdings. Open space designation can be used to protect scenic corridors.
4) Control development in unsuitable areas: Lands unsuitable for development due to floods, soil conditions, rockfall, avalanche, landslide, wildlife, etc. can be placed in open space designation and prevented from development.
«
' 5) To provide recreational resources: Depending on the nature of the open space lands, these areas are highly suitable for a wide range of park and recreation uses.
The following are some suggested goals and objectives for the designation of
• open space lands within eastern R1o Blanco County. They are provided to show how open space goals and objectives may be stated.


OPEN SPACE GOALS
* To designate certain open space lands within eastern Rio Blanco County
"â–  and around Meeker to maintain and enhance the rural quality of the area.
* To designate certain open space lands in and immediately surrounding Meeker to maintain and enhance the rural and historic quality and the sense of identity within the community.
* * * To use open space land planning and design as a core element in new
subdivision and PUD development.
* To use open space land planning and design as a key tool in linking and/or buffering new development with historical Meeker.
• * To use open space lands to utilize fully environmental opportunities and
serve social need to parks and recreation.
* To use open space lands as a land use control device to prevent development in environmentally unsuitable areas and yet permit suitable parks and recreation uses as dictated by social need.
OPEN SPACE OBJECTIVES
* To coordinate open space land planning and design between Rio Blanco County, the town of Meeker and the Eastern R1o Blanco County Parks and Recreation Commission.
* To develop and implement an open space plan as a key element 1n the Rio Blanco County Master Plan, Town of Meeker Comprehensive Plan and the Parks and Recreation Master Plan.
* To strengthen open space land designation powers at both county and town levels enabling better control of the selection and intended use of such
' lands.
* To use open space lands to link park and recreation facilities, provide pedestrian corridors, maintain viewsheds, buffer incompatible land uses, maximize natural features, and provide for social needs related to the above.
* To use open space land-use designation to prevent unsuitable development in areas of natural and geologic hazards, environmentally sensitive areas and to maintain the most important viewsheds.


OPEN SPACE CONCEPT
- As a means of understanding the regional context for a parks and recreation system for Meeker and the area it is important to look at regional land-use. Based upon the previous analysis information and the suggested goals and objectives, a concept for regional open space management was developed and is graphically displayed and summarized on the following map.
» The primary intention of the concept is to develop a regional open space system that 1) maintains and enhances the rural quality of Meeker and the region 2) provides a physical linkage between Meeker and the region and 3) provides Meeker with lands suitable for present and future park and recreation develop ment.
' The concept elements are summarized below:
1) Park and Recreation Needs:
* provides for a trail/bikeway along the White River.
* provides for hiking and backcountry access into the BLM lands northwest of town.
* investigates 2 important open space areas directly west and east of town as possible recreation sites.
2) Environmental Opportunities:
* trail system along the river is an optimum floodplain use.
* the property along the river on the south side east of South Park represents a possible recreation acquisition area.
* access up Anderson Gulch (BLM access) is maintained.
* Meeker Dome is recognized as a resource worth preserving.
* the rural quality on the mesa south of the White River is preserved.
’ 3) Land-use Implications:
* provides for recreation lands between Meeker and Meeker Terrace and in close proximity to existing town facilities.
* provides for optional recreation development areas on the west side of town and south of the White River.
* provides for open space areas that help buffer and maintain the rural qualities characteristic of Meeker and the region.


RECOMMENDATIONS
* The following is a list of general recommendations based upon the previous
freview of county planning and design regulations affecting park, open space and recreation development. These recommendations are certainly far from complete, and are subject ot review and evaluation. They also do not fully address the real planning complexities, politics and financial aspects and it is also realized that some of these recommendations have been attempted in
* the past or are presently in progress.
" General:
* Involve the public: everyone including all governmental agencies and
t commissions, special interests and anyone willing to participate.
* See this study as a workbook, a flexible tool to be changed, added on to, deleted from, expanded, etc.
* Accept the problem that both short and long range needs must be met.
This requires rapidly establishing the conceptual framework for the long-range planning and will help prevent short-range mistakes that become long-range nightmares.
* At any scale of investigation, attempt to truly understand what the real problem is, not just the symptom of the problem. The solution then derived will be far more successful. Only when the real problem is understood can the real need be addressed.
County Planning Policy:
* The "master plan" or growth guide must be seen as an on-going, flexible, changing document. Much of it is out-of-date and incomplete and cannot respond to the complexities of what is happening currently.
I
* Policies for open space and park designation and management must be more
â–º explicit and yet flexible permitting the county, in coordination with all other entities, to take a powerful role in protecting their most important interests.
County Planning Policy for Meeker:
* There needs to be more active coordination/integration between county and town to simultaneously develop and implement planning and design decisions reinforcing both town and county planning policy. This is not occurring presently. *
* Presently the county plan is almost "neutral" to the Meeker Plan and particularly the Meeker Terrace proposal. Though the county favors eastern expansion, not all county concerns are being truly addressed. Neither the county nor town are in a position to effectively evaluate the Meeker Terrace proposal relative to an overall land use concept.


*1
'^County Zoning:
'• * County zoning provides little real land-use control at the large scale.
- » The zoning ordinance does not support either the county growth guide or
the Meeker concept plan.
• * More control for regional parks and open space designation is necessary.
"County Subdivision Regulations:
*: >
* Although many of the regulations that apply to the designation and management of parks and open space are good, the county should explore additional
/ legal options to give them more proposal review powers.
Summary:
f y
* Consider parks and open space land-uses at both the county and town levels as a core element in any comprehensive land-use plan. Goals, objectives and policies must be established for the designation, dedication, design and management of these lands to reinforce this core element concept.
-» * As with both the recreation master plan and this study, see the system as a constantly changing process where refinement, needs assessment and prioritization may change on a frequent basis.
jin terms of park and open space planning and design as related to the present Meeker zoning ordinance, the 0 or open use district provides an opportunity.
-The 0 district is designated as follows: "The 0 open use district is provided for areas where prohibition of all types of building is desired, for reasons of flood, fire protection, extreme topography, or adverse soil conditions. Grazing and other agricultural uses are permitted in this district."
"Permitted uses include:
+
* accessory uses as permitted in Chapter 18.54 of the zoning ordinance ”* agriculture, farming, ranching, forestry
* airports
- * automobile parking areas " * golf courses
. * recreation, but not including residential structures
* sewage disposal plants
’ * temporary uses, as permitted in Chapter 18.51
I* water storage reservoirs
•
‘Although this district leaves opportunities for park, open space and recreation development, the nature of the development could be highly restricted due to the nature of the site. In many ways it is a restrictive district permitting 'certain types of uses because the site conditions may be inappropriate for more conventional development including active park siting. It is also a permissive ^district as it allows for a wide range of uses.


TOWN PARK SYSTEM PLANNING AND DESIGN


TOWN ZONING
The accompanying map displays the town zoning ordinance and summarizes the
Sesign considerations that were noted.
eTeSIGN CONSIDERATIONS:
*
* Higher densities are created on the west and south sides of town in the R-3 and R-3MH zones. The west side of town also lacks park sites.
•*
* There are several undeveloped park sites in the PUD area to the north of town (Sanderson and Sage Hills).
*
* The 0 or open district zoning is poorly defined and too permissive as an open use district.
r
* The R-3 and H-B districts act as a physical barrier between the downtown area and the river.

40


CONCEPT MEEKER 8000
jihe Town Concept Plan
|he overall goal of this Comprehensive Plan and Development Guide is to keep leker a pleasant community by preserving and enhancing the physical and social ility of life found here today." And so begins the town's growth plan. This latement says a great deal and there are many key words. It is interesting note that value is place upon "the physical and social quality of life found •e today." With projected though somewhat speculative population increases, |is goal will be a hard one to achieve.
recreation, park and open space considerations inherent in such a goal itement should be obvious. Such considerations are core elements in the ;servation and enhancement of the physical and social quality of life re-'red to.
is also pointed out that the plan is "a living document which must change grow as the community changes and grows." The plan is a process.
fie of the specific goals and policies that directly relate and reinforce planning and design are listed below. It should be reiterated that in jie comprehensive planning all major goals and their accompanying policies are perrelated and cannot be evaluated isolated from other goals. This is no fferent with park, recreation and open space planning. Considerations that eliminated here are done so only out of the necessity of focus. There
41


‘ are certain goals and policies which provide specific constraints and opportunities which cannot be fully evaluated within the scope of this project.
* Land Use Goals
* To create a compact and aesthetic community
* To preserve and enhance the existing community as the social and cultural focal point of Meeker
* To strive for a continued sensitivity to the natural environment seeking to minimize adverse environmental impacts whenever possible.
Commercial Development Goals
* To encourage...landscaping along highway commercial activities Industrial Development Goals
* To encourage the use of frontage roads and other devices to minimize traffic conflicts, and encourage adequate yards, open space, off-street parking, landscaping, and screening to prevent blighting influences.
Public and Quasi-Public Development Goals
* To encourage public and quasi-public facilities, and attractive landscaping...
, maintaining adequate
"To provide a linked system of playgrounds, city-wide neighborhood parks, and community-wide parks, and open spaces consistent to established standards which will improve recreational opportunities and preserve and enhance the natural beauty in and surrounding the town."
jThe last policy deals with the prime focus of this study. It could be regarded, expanded or even condensed, but the real issue is the quality-of-1ife |that such a policy strives to maintain and enhance.
These policies are the present foundation from which to work.
|lt is understood fully that Meeker is undergoing rapid change and with finan-:ial and staff constraints there are severe 1 imitations as to planning and de-;ign capabilities. However, the Meeker 8000 Plan is, in reality, an incom-)lete conceptual study, especially in light of attempting to review proposals ;uch as Meeker Terrace. In terms of parks and open space planning and design :he plan is broadbrush and again incomplete. In essence this plan must be >een as a starting point for a more highly articulated and delineated compre-lensive planning process. At this time, it will be necessary for all involved igencles to respond to operational and short-term decisions quickly and this lecessitates developing and utilizing sound overall land-use concepts and policies quickly to prevent regrettable mistakes.
'he following map displays the Meeker Concept Plan.
in terms of land-use and design considerations, this concept supports the county growth guide but does not provide a clean overall land-use concept for the town. The distinction between park and public sites is confusing and the con-lept does not provide a framework for park planning.


OWN SUB-REGS
thin the town subdivision regulations there is a provision for planned unit velopments (PUD). The purpose for such a provision "is to encourage flexi-lity and variety in land development, a more efficient allocation and main-lance of open space, and a more efficient use of those public facilities quired in connection with such development." The regulations go on to ecify that the developer must "provide 30% of the total area to be dedicated reserved for open space land, exclusive of required parking and streets."
addition there are restrictions within the subdivision regulations within near the 100-year floodplain.
Important provision is 17.12.070 Areas dedicated for public use: The /eloper of any subdivision must dedicate a minimum of 10% of the gross land ea of the final plat "for various public uses, including but not limited to hools, parks and open spaces...The site selection is also at the town's scretion.
d other subdivision regulations are worthy of note: 17.44.010 Environmental sservation. "The design and development of subdivisions shall preserve, in-far as it is possible, the natural terrain, natural drainage, existing top-il and trees." 17.44.020 Land subject to hazardous conditions. "Land bject to hazardous conditions such as landslides, mud flows, rock falls, dw avalanches, possible mine subsidence, shallow water table, open quarries, Dods, and polluted or nonpotable water supply shall be identified and shall t be subdivided until the hazards have been eliminated or will be eliminated the subdivision and construction plans."
thin the regulations for mobile homes section 16.04.310 Outdoor recreation sas. "A. A mobile home park shall provide an amount not less than 20% of i gross mobile home park area for outdoor recreational area or areas.
Outdoor recreation areas include, but not by way of limitation, adult treation and child play areas, and swimming pools, but shall not include sas devoted to guest parking, utilities, drying yards, a roadway, mobile ne space, storage area, nor any area required for setbacks.
Outdoor recreation areas shall be located in such a manner as to be free Dm hazards and topography incompatible with the purposes of the recreation sas, and shall be conveniently located, where topography and traffic of the Dile home park permits."
is obvious that these subdivision regulations and mobile home regulations â– i provide a basis for park design and development and that in addition there a concern for lands unsuitable for conventional/residential development and js a possible framework for establishing open space criteria.
though many of the park and open space regulations that apply, particularly PUD's and mobile home parks, are good, more felxibility and options must be ildt into the system to enable the town to have additional powers when they ed them. The town must also enforce the application of these regulations.
43


*
•Proposal review and revision procedures must be thorough and comprehensive to assure town concerns are properly addressed. For example a 30% open ^space dedication within a PUD can provide usable though possibly underdeveloped park and recreation sites, but not if the 30% dedicated is unusable ^because of steep terrain, etc. and should not be in consideration as open 'space within the PUD.


AND USE ELEMENT
iarks and open space "master plan" or plan element in an overall land-use iprehensive plan can become a central means of achieving and reinforcing leneral land-u^e plan. The open space and park system can be used as a fying principle or concept in organizing other land uses and at the same le serve social need and provide physical buffering where required. Given ■tain amenities, such as the White River and public domain lands, this is •ticularly relevant to the Meeker area.
1s difficult to develop a workable physical open space and park plan in a ;uation where planning is in such a high degree of flux and there is not a “m concept developed for area land-use. Park and open space design should considered an opportunity to aid in the development and reinforcement of overall land-use plan.
45


FACILITY ANALYSIS
As a means of developing town park system concepts and plans it was necessary to examine and evaluate the existing recreation sites, both developed and ’undeveloped, town-owned and school-owned. These sites will become the foundation of a park development plan.
The following map displays the sites that were examined and summarizes their status.


OWN ANALYSIS
part of the process of developing town park system concepts, a design alysis of the community was performed. This analysis Identified several oblems and potentials to park development and these are summarized below.
oblems:
The White River Park serves more as a regional park than a community park. This is largely due to the permitted camping. There are problems of conflicting uses and management problems during periods of high use.
The river park is not strongly connected to the river corridor because of private ownership and the lack of a trail system.
The highway business district acts as a physical barrier between the downtown area and the river.
There are higher housing densities and a lack of neighborhood parks on the west side of town.
The new pool is poorly located relative to other facilities or the possibility of site expansion. The pool is on the edge of the existing community.
tentials:
There is a physical and social cohesiveness to the community that is evident in its attractiveness, neatness and the sense of community pride.
There is an excellent opportunity to connect the river park with the river corridor through the use of a trail system/bikeway.
There is the potential of creating a strong downtown park/open space area around the courthouse and linking this with the elementary school. This downtown park could be 1n-turn linked with the river using street closure or planting and construction materials.
There is an historic quality in the downtown area.
There is the possibility of strong pedestrian connections with BLM lands to the northwest and up Sulphur Creek.
There are several possible expansion areas for future recreation development.
There are many developed and undeveloped park sites within the community. ie following sheet graphically displays and summarizes this information.
47


MEEKER TERRACE ANALYSIS
he Eastern Rio Blanco County Parks and Recreation Master Plan is based upon future or medium-term population projection of 11,500 for the determination f facility requirements. This does not account for the population and needs hat may be generated by Meeker Terrace.
n terms of town park planning and design it 1s critical to understand the lanning and design relationship of Meeker Terrace to the existing community, his relationship must be clearly defined. The Meeker Terrace relationship as several possibilities:
) It acts as a new town center independent of Meeker.
) It acts as a subdivision or planned unit development extension of the existing community and provides many of its own services and facilities.
) It is fully integrated with the existing community.
he plans by the developers and the town indicate the desire to annex the ntire project area into the town. If this is the case either option 2 or 3 eems most likely. A decision must be made as to how accurate the population nd buildout projections are for Meeker Terrace and how park and recreation lanning is to be coordinated. Currently studies are underway examining the hysical and social cohesion elements.
ndications are that the developers are planning to propose a mandatory home-oner's association and manage parks and recreation within this association, hat would be the relationship of this association to the recreation commis-ion or district? If complete physical and social cohesion between Meeker nd Meeker Terrace is wanted, is it desirable to permit a homeowner's asso-iation to manage its own parks and recreation within the larger context of he commission or district?
t is the judgment of this consultant that it is most desirable to attempt to Lilly integrate Meeker Terrace and Meeker socially and physically and that a rimary means of doing this is with park, open space and recreation design anagement. Meeker Terrace recreation should be fully coordinated with the own and the recreation commission. The way to achieve this is not through a ameowner’s association.
he proposed development area should be brought into the framework of the arks and recreation master plan in terms of population projections and fac1-ity demands. This would assure adequate facilities for Meeker and Meeker errace, would prevent redundant facilities and would provide both Meeker id Meeker Terrace with specific overlapping opportunities and responsibili-ies. The community and the recreation commission are in a position of power t the present time with regards to the Meeker Terrace proposal review and hould see that their best interests are attended to.
preliminary plat design has been reviewed although this design is far from inal or complete. Specific problems were, however, apparent in the overall “sign concept. 1) The general development area is linear to the existing
48


community and not centralized. 2) The airport location becomes very awkward. 3) The potential for highway business expansion becomes likely as there is a long contiguous border between the project and the highway. 4) The main park site indicated is located directly off the end of the runway and 5) Most of the dedicated open space lands are steep slopes or drainageways limiting their use for recreation.
Such specific design considerations within Meeker Terrace are very important and should be addressed in the proposal review process.


IONCEPT DEVELOPMENT
a means of organizing and planning town park and recreation facilities 3 icepts were developed and then a facility plan was generated for each const.
a primary concept determinant was the Meeker Terrace proposal and how impor-nt this development is considered by the community. Concept 1 does not ally consider the Meeker Terrace proposal as an important factor. Concept 2 rtially responds to the proposed development and Concept 3 fully responds sviding the greatest opportunity for physical and social cohesion and inte-ation.


p
*
.CHARACTERISTICS WHICH ARE COMMON TO ALL 3 TOWN CONCEPTS:
1)
*
’2)
1*3)
4)
5)
r
F)
P)
All 3 concepts or plans support the regional open space concept that has been developed. The important elements are the preservation of some open space lands and future recreation development areas on both the west and east sides of town. In addition all 3 plans incorporate a river trail and corridor system and look at acquisition of land in the floodplain for recreational uses. The linkages with Anderson Gulch and Sulphur Creek are maintained in all three concepts as well as the use of the BLM lands northwest of town as open space.
All 3 concepts support the County Growth Guide although that admittedly is not saying much. Basically the concepts support existing growth patterns as well as the anticipated growth patterns as encouraged by the County.
All 3 concepts attempt to handle both Immediate need as well as future need and expansion areas. This is obviously difficult as there 1s literally not room for some of the needed facilities such as softball fields, tennis courts etc. until certain lands are acquired or vacated from their present uses or decisions are made to require that certain community facilities are built within Meeker Terrace.
Although each concept varies with this regard, each concept, in its own way, supports existing community structure, that is to say the physical layout of the town and its amenities. Each concept varies, however, as to what is really defined as existing community structure as opposed to future community structure.
Each concept also develops a park system hierarchy. That is to say that there is a logical progression of community parks (no regional parks), neighborhood parks with neighborhood playgrounds and totlots incorporated within the neighborhood parks. There should be one main identifiable community park, secondary community parks, etc. The neighborhood parks should serve the needs of the immediate area It is to serve and should not be repetitious.
All 3 concepts provide for options 1n terms of expansion areas for recreational development, the most important area being the Franklin property along the river on the south side.
All 3 concepts are capable of preserving the general rural quality of the region and town even with the advent of Meeker Terrace, but only if well thought out and properly implemented.
All 3 concepts have specific design elements that are the same. For example, all 3 encourage the development of a court area around the County Courthouse linked with what may be the new town hall and then in turn linking this area with the river park. All concepts encourage the preservation and reinforcement of certain historic qualities found downtown.
51


CONCEPT 1
.Major Elements of this Concept:
i ----------------------------
fl) It supports the existing community structure in the sense that is does not really respond to the growth direction to the east and Meeker Terrace.
r
2) It maintains the river park as the primary community park and distributes the other facilities in town, primarily the ball field development to the west side of town.
Major Advantages:
,»
1) It accounts for the unique quality of the river park as the main identifiable park and maintains this as the primary community park. However, all
1 3 concepts recommend the use changes as have been proposed.
2) By placing ballfield development to the west it preserves at least part of that land in somewhat of an open space quality. It also provides a neighborhood use area on the west side of town.
3) As really with all 3 concepts, the expensive structural facilities are kept out of the floodplain provided some floodway mitigation procedures are used to prevent flooding of the County garage site were that land to be used for future recreation development.
4) The area to the west side of town would probably be the easiest and least expensive to develop compared to all of the other sites, with the exception of possible sites within Meeker Terrace.
Major Disadvantages:
1) By creating a secondary community park the facilities tend to become dispersed. Also, although the river park is called the primary community park, if it becomes basically a passive park area, it may not be considered the primary community park compared to a larger, more active park somewhere else. This becomes a question of semantics as it is felt the river park will remain the most unique park and thus primary in that sense. 2
2) The concept basically ignores the most likely pattern of growth if an attempt is really going to be made to bring Meeker Terrace into the recreation district and enforce complete coordination. People in Meeker Terrace are less likely to use a facility on the extreme west side of Meeker. Such development to the west would almost encourage Meeker Terrace to develop their own recreation facilities independent of the existing community.
52


lONCEPT 2
jor Elements of this Concept:
This concept partially responds to the most likely growth pattern, namely Meeker Terrace. The only significant difference between this concept and concept 1 is the placement of the secondary community park (ballfield development) to the east side of town, either north of the existing fairgrounds, on the existing fairground site, were it to be moved, east of the new pool, further east on the intervening lands between Meeker and Meeker Terrace or within Meeker Terrace itself. The possibility is thus created of centralizing the facilities more with the new pool and possible rec center addition and with other facilities that may be located within this general area.
The concept still reinforces the existing community structure but addresses the reality of a population shift to the east.
This concept also still considers the river park as the primary community park for the same reasons as addressed in concept 1.
jor Advantages:
The concept begins to physically respond to the growth direction to the east and thus encourages recreation coordination and planning with Meeker Terrace. It will tend to support a physical andsocial cohesion of the existing community and the new development. The concept centralizes the facilities.
i This concept, as with concept 1, still considers the river park as the special, unique park within Meeker and calls it the primary community park though intensive recreation development elsewhere may weaken this concept.
i By utilizing some of the intervening land between Meeker and Meeker Terrace, this also insures the preservation of some open space lands in this area and a possible open space corridor between Meeker and Meeker Terrace.
tjor Disadvantages:
I Some of the areas directly to the east of town would be difficult to develop as ballfields due to the terrain and drainage. It would not provide park area for the west side of town.
I Due to the locations of the new pool and the possible rec center addition and the location of the County garage site, were that to be vacated, it may prove difficult to link all of these directly to form a true community park with shared common facilities. However, this would reinforce the river park as the primary community park despite its size and intensity of use.
53


CONCEPT 3
- Major Elements of this Concept:
1) The primary objective here, as with concept 2, is to centralize the recreation facilities in the area of the new pool and the County garage site. The primary difference between this concept and concept 2 is that a strong attempt is made to make this recreation development area the primary community park with shared common facilities. However, due to development constraints, ft may be difficult to strongly link these facilities physically.
2) The concept fully responds to the Meeker Terrace development in terms of direction of growth. Inherent within this concept is the possibility that some of the facilities may need to go directly within Meeker Terrace.
3) The concept reinforces the future community structure assuming the Meeker Terrace development goes as planned.
4) Although the concept does not change the proposed use of the existing river park, this park, although still unique, would become a secondary community park in relationship to the population center.
Major Advantages;
1) Again, as with concept 2 and even more so, this concept responds to the most likely direction of growth and encourages coordination and cohesion, both socially and physically, with Meeker Terrace. The concept again attempts to centralize the facilities.
2) Although the concept changes the river park to the secondary community park, this may be merely a question of semantics and may actually favor the proposed intended use of this area as more of a passive park. 3
3) Again, as with concept 2, by moving recreational facilities east of town, or in the intervening land between Meeker Terrace, this makes possible
an open space corridor between Meeker and Meeker Terrace.
Major Disadvantages:
Same as concept 2.
54


RECOMMENDATIONS
1) If it is truly the desire to annex Meeker Terrace into the community and to bring a physical and social cohesion between the two, thus reducing tensions between the present residents and the newcomers, then it is essential to require that Meeker Terrace participate in the recreation district formation. As has been stated before, to permit Meeker Terrace to develop their own recreation district or mandatory association that ignores the present community is unwise. This obviously means considerable additional work. Meeker Terrace would have to be brought into the Recreation Master Plan or should it be said that the Recreation Master Plan would have to be expanded to include Meeker Terrace. This would involve an analysis of new population projections, the preparation of new facility needs based on the revised projections,and a clear design and planning proceudre to determine what kinds of facilities would need to be provided within Meeker Terrace and whom they would serve. By this, the town could receive facilities that it does not have the land for, or possibly the money for, alone. The timing is excellent for this as Bar-70 has not submitted the final proposal and thus would be capable of design changes. It would require some rather rapid footwork in terms of politics, planning and design to pull it off.
2) It is on these bases that concepts 2 or 3 are favored over concept 1. Concepts 2 and 3 are very similar. The only significant difference is the interpretation of the river park as the primary community park or a secondary park. Again, this may be strictly semantical. It is felt that the river park is the unique feature within the community and should be emphasized as such, especially with the possibility of a strong linkage with the downtown area as was proposed. However, intensive recreation development elsewhere may weaken this concept as referred to before. 3
3) The next step 1s really the selection of an overall concept which might have to Include additional studies in terms of bringing Meeker Terrace within the master plan. After this there would be a process of final master planning in terms of site facilities, a process of refining in additional detail what has already been done. The next step is the preparation of detailed site plans and construction drawings. This requires establishing priorities in terms of phasing for both what is needed first and what can be afforded first. The detailed master planning and the preparation of site plans and construction drawings is really the job for a professional landscape architectural firm, provided the funds are available. The result would be well worth it in terms of design quality, functionality, maintenance, and long-term costs.


PARK PLANNING AND DESIGN


PARK DESIGN
The next phase in the town park system planning and design sequence is the preparation of conceptual or schematic designs for the individual park sites. The following is a schematic design package prepared for the 12th Street park site. It demonstrates the preliminary site design phase and some of the process used to prepare the design.
57


SCHEMATIC DESIGN PACKAGE
’FOOTHILLS NEIGHBORHOOD PARK * 7
Meeker, Colorado
Prepared by Steven Walker for the
Eastern Rio Blanco County Parks and Recreation Commission
7 May 1981
Proposed Budget: $16,000


PACKAGE ORGANIZATION:
.1) Development Goals and Objectives
2) Design Goals and Objectives
3) Site Facility Programming
4) Problems
5) Potentials
'6) Schematic Design 7) Design Suggestions


Development Goals and Objectives:
1) Coordinate the design and development of this park with the overall park system development plan that is now being prepared by the Eastern Rio Blanco Parks and Recreation Commission.
2) Create a neighborhood park that incorporates a totlot, playground for older children and an adult resting and supervision area for the use of the immediate neighborhood.
3) Coordinate development and design of this park with the future 11th Street park site.
4) To create a park environment whose primary concern is for the health, safety and welfare of the children who will use it.
5) To provide adequate and suitable recreation facilities and equipment for the children and adults who will use the park.
Design Goals and Objectives:
1) To provide safe and efficient access onto the park from the surrounding neighborhood areas.
2) To provide a safe buffer between the park and Pinyon Street to the west and northwest.
3) To coordinate the construction and design characteristics of the park with other town parks, especially the future 11th Street park.
4) To provide a certain amount of buffering and screening of the park from the surrounding neighborhood for the benefit of the park users as well as the surrounding residents.
5) To utilize construction materials that are suitable and compatible with the surrounding neighborhood character. 6
6) To choose a design,in terms of construction materials and plant materials, that will require minimal maintenance and upkeep.


SITE FACILITY PROGRAMMING:
Totlot Area:
* chair swings for small children - 4 in a group
* sandbox area - should be contained on edges, a small climbing structure could be place within the sandbox area if it is big enough
* slide - a small slide with a soft sand landing area, to probably be used with adult supervision
* 2 benches - to be used by adults supervising their childrens' play Seating Area:
* 4 benches
* 1 picnic-type table
* small paved surface area
* small lawn area Playground Area:
* regular swings - 4 to 6 in one unit
* slide - for older children
* climbing apparatus for older children
* possibly additional playground equipment provided the budget can provide for it. *
* 1 or 2 benches for seating


Problems:
1) The site receives generally poor solar exposure. There is a building to the south and the possibility of the construction of another apartment building to the north. The foothills to the west and northwest will limit sunlight also. It will be cool in summer, but cold in the winter.
2) There is a relatively steep grade between the park site and Pinyon Street to the west and northwest. This could create access, erosion control and construction problems on that part of the site.
3) The vicinity of Pinyon Street to the totlot portion of the playground will necessitate some thought to prevent any conflicts between drivers and children approaching the park or crossing the street.
4) As with any area in town, special attention to the soil1 2 3 4 5 s conditions and drainage are crucial, especially to prevent drainage problems with the apartment building on the south side of the site.
Potentials:
1) The natural configuration of the site is excellent for the development of the 2 different play areas which should be separated anyway due to the age differences between the children who will use these 2 areas. The corridor between provides a good place for an adult resting and supervision area that permits observation of both play areas.
2) The location of the park in relation to the apartment building to the south, the adjacent residences and the possible future apartment building to the north, makes it good for serving many children in this immediate area conveniently.
3) There are good views and exposure to the east and southeast of the site. Morning sun should be good.
4) The park's proximity to the future 12th Street park provides an opportunity for a direct path/bikeway between the 2 parks. This would be highly desirable. Consideration should be given to this in the design and development of the lands between the 2 parks to provide for this. There will probably be a street sidewalk connecting the 2 parks; however, a direct connection between the 2 parks between lots would be a nice feature.
5) Obviously there is a nice view of the foothills to the west and northwest.
62


*
‘
> Design Details:
* Use of plant materials:
r» * It would be wise in selecting trees and shrubs that only native or imported species be used that are suitable to the soils and have a low watering and low maintenance requirement. There are many such species and the CSU Extension Service has a great deal of information on this.
â–º There Is no point in selecting species that will require constant watering, pruning and care as this will prove to be costly and tedious over time.
* * Groundcovers are generally high maintenance plants requiring watering
and weeding in order to look attractive and should be avoided.
* It is recommended that lawn (bluegrass) areas be kept to a minimum.
â–º Although lawns are probably the cheapest, easiest way of covering ground,
^ they are basically high maintenance and require constant watering and
cutting to be kept attractive. For ease of maintenance it is desirable that the lawn area be kept 1n one easily accessible continuous area with few mowing obstables and a mowing strip around any existing obstacles or trees for ease of mowing and to prevent accidental damage to the trees.
r Obviously lawn areas on steep slopes are difficult to mow and water as the water will tend to runoff and not penetrate the ground surface.
* In other areas, where a grass-like surface is desired, it is recommended that a native seed mix like buffalo-grass be utilized. Although such grasses do not look as green and lush as bluegrass, they have many advantages. They require little cutting, virtually no watering once they are established, are very durable, and can provide the same comforts and pleasures of a bluegrass lawn 1f properly done.
â–º
* Seek professional assistance in terms of actual planting techniques if there is a problem. Injured, diseased or poorly planted trees and shrubs are likely to die.
Irrigation:
* Underground irrigation systems are expensive and need constant maintenance and adjustment and are really only valuable 1n large areas or areas requiring much water. An underground irrigation system is unnecessary for this site as not enough of the park requires watering. Besides, the budget would be heavily dented by such installation. It is recommended that
1 or 2 small water lines be installed onto the site with quick couplers or hose bibs permitting someone to quickly hook a hose or sprinkler onto the bib and do the necessary watering. Even low water requirement plant materials will need care and watering until they are established so there must be a means of getting water to these plants. After the establishment period, only the bluegrass area should need constant watering and possibly a small sprinkler system can be installed, operating off of one of the main lines, to handle this area. During periods of extreme drought the low water requirement plants will of course need some water.
63


Lighting:
* It is my recommendation that no lighting is necessary on the park as this will be a day-use facility. Also, such night lighting would be a nuisance to adjoining residents and could encourage night-time use inappro-
" priate to the desired purpose of the park. There is no need to run , electrical power onto the site.
CONSTRUCTION MATERIALS:
Use of Stone, Brick and Mood:
â–º\
There are obviously a range of construction materials that may be used for building walls, playground equipment, paving surfaces etc. It is recommended that materials be selected that are similar in characteristic to the natural surroundings and the architecture surrounding the park site. Stone, similar in characteristic to that found indigenous to the region, could make an excellent wall and slope control material. Stone may also be used as a paving material in areas receiving special attention. Brick may also be used as a wall and paving material and would be appropriate to the site. Wood would probably be the best material for the climbing structures and other details, due to cost and its natural quality. It would need to be pressure treated for water protection for any long-range durability.
Concrete:
Concrete provides the least expensive paving solution when compared for long-range durability. However, when used in excess, concrete can be rather unsightly. Although critical pathways may need to be concrete, asphalt is an alternative in some areas, though not as durable. Large concrete slabs and exposed concrete walls should be avoided when possible.
•Painting: * *
Most wood structures would appear best unpainted and this would be conducive to the natural environment. They must be treated and could be stained. Metal play equipment would look better if painted, provided the color is selected carefully. Bright, gaudy colors are generally unsightly in a setting such as this park.
Sand:
Sand provides an excellent base for many types of play equipment as it is soft and prevents injury and drains very well with a proper subgrade. However, it is necessary to provide a raised edge around the sand to prevent it from being kicked around or blown away.
Recreation Equipment:
* There are a great variety of pre-manufactured play structures that may be chosen from. Some are quite expensive, so budget concerns must dictate what is best to some degree. Obviously the highest quality and most attractive that can be afforded is the most desirable. Just like anything else, quality pays for itself.
54


* There are a wide range of play structures involving all sorts of materials that may be manufactured on the site by volunteers if necessary. Old tires, railroad ties, etc. provide many options for building climbing and playing structures. However, special attention must be paid to detail to prevent any sort of hazard or danger of injury to children (nails, sharp protrusions, etc.)
â–º
Site Furniture:
It is felt that wood benches, a wood table and wood trash receptacles are most appropriate. There are several manufacturers of such items. Such features should be matched in appearance for the sake of design attractiveness. They could also be built by volunteers, as some of these items are indeed expensive. However, the budget should be adequate to cover the cost of some nice site furniture.
Signage:
It is recommended that a signage system be established for the entire town park system. There should be an attractive logo or symbol that is used on all the signs and each individual sign should bear the name of that Individual park. A routed wood sign, somewhat in the sytle of the National Park Service, is what is in mind. The sign for the Foothilss Neighborhood Park should follow this system once it is established. A temporary sign may be desirable for the time being.
65


APPENDIX


SUMMARY PROPOSAL FOR THESIS PROJECT
STEVEN P. WALKER
CANDIDATE FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF LANDSCAPE ARCHITECTURE COLLEGE OF ENVIRONMENTAL DESIGN UNIVERSITY OF COLORADO AT DENVER
NOVEMBER 1, 1980
SUBMITTED TO; Mr. Gail G. Gunter
Instructor, L.A. 700-701 UCD Fall 1980
PROJECT TITLE: Parks and Open Space Study-Town of Meeker, Colorado
PROPOSAL SUMMARY;
The candidate proposes to perform a comprehensive study of parks and open space management and design for lands within and immediately adjacent to the Town of Meeker, Colorado.
This study will provide baseline information for a comprehensive plan for the selection, design and management of a parks and open space system to meet the present and future needs of the community and region.
MAJOR PARTICIPANTS:
1. ) Eastern Rio Blanco County Parks and Recreation Commission
Rio Blanco County, Colorado Mr. Robert Myers, Chairman
2. ) Mr. Jon Schler
Rural Community Development Director
Division of Impact Assistance, Department of Local Affairs State of Colorado
3. ) Steven P. Walker
Graduate Student, Landscape Architecture Program College of Environmental Design University of Colorado at Denver
ADDITIONAL PARTICIPANTS:
1. ) Town of Meeker, Colorado
Frank Freeman, Town Manager
2. ) Rio Blanco County Planning Department
Meeker, Colorado
3. ) Bureau of Land Management
White River Resource Area Meeker, Colorado


* «
I
* 4.) Center for Community Development and Design
â–º College of Environmental Design University of Colorado at Denver
K PROJECT LOCATION:
, Meeker is the county seat of Rio Blanco County, Colorado.
Meeker is located approximately 40 miles north of Rifle on
* State Highway 13* Meeker is about 66 miles by road northwest of Glenwood Springs ( see location map ).
SITUATION:
Meeker is currently a community of 2,400 with a possible future
> population projected to be as high as 14,000 within 5 to 8 years. Located within the energy abundant region of Colorado's northwest, Meeker will experience, impacts as a result of oil
f shale, coal and uranium exploration and development within the region. These impacts will include increased demand for hous-y ing and services including parks and recreation.
»•
To meet the present and future parks, recreation and open space needs of the community and region, an on-going, flexible, pro-
* cess type plan for the planning, design and management of a parks and open space system is needed. The system must address regional and local needs, environmental constraints and op-
y portunities, and the planning context within which the system must operate.
PROJECT OBJECTIVES:
The primary objective of this study is to provide the baseline information and conceptual framework for the development of a workable and flexible system for the selection, design and management of parks and open space lands within and surrounding the Town of Meeker, Colorado. The final document will be a flexible working manual that may be revised and expanded as needed. It will include background data, narrative and graphic information.
EDUCATIONAL OBJECTIVES:
The primary educational objective of this project is to gain additional experience and expertise iri regional, community and site planning and design. In addition, more experience shall be gained in community and public participation techniques. The study shall also investigate and utilize defensible design processes for community development and design and the establishment of goals, objectives, guidelines and critieria.
METHODOLOGY:
This study shall investigate regional, town scale and site specific elements of park and open space system design and management. The project is seperated into 4 1-month phases.
The following is a description of each phase:
Phase 1- Background and Planning Context for Parks and Open
2


Space Planning and Design: This phase involves the initial problem investigation and definition and review of existing information. It is the intent to provide an historical context for parks and open space planning in and around Meeker and to show the relationship of such planning to an overall community development process.
Phase 2- Regional Open Space Planning and Design: This phase will investigate regional open space planning and design criteria for Meeker and an area of approximately 5 miles around Meeker to include existing, new and proposed subdivisions. Subjects to be investigated include environmental constraints and opportunities, goals and objectives based upon social need and environmental constraints and opportunities, land use concept alternatives and implementation and phasing strategies.
Phase 3- Town Parks and Open Space Planning and Design: A similar methodology will be used to investigate town parks and open space planning and design. Emphasis shall be placed upon conceptual park programming, linkages and relationships and developing a hierarchy of parks within the community.
Phase 4- Park Planning and Design: This section will investigate specific park site planning, design criteria and design objective development and site programming. Conceptual designs will be provided to illustrate the result of the process.
PROJECT TIME SCHEDULE:
Phase 1- Background Research and Completion Date
Planning Context Feb. 1, 1981
2- Regional Open Space Planning 3- Town Parks and Open Space Planning Mar. 1, 1981
and Design Apr. 1, 1981
Park Planning and Design May 1, 1981
* Final Document and Presentation QUALIFICATIONS: see resume attached May 15. 1981
FUNDING:
$2500 - $3000 to be provided from the Division of Impact As-sitance, Department of Local Affairs, State of Colorado and the Center for Community Development and Design, College of Environmental Design, University of Colorado at Denver, for the reimbursement of direct expenses incurred, to include: travel, meals, lodging, long distance phone calls, film and processing and direct material and reproduction costs.
3


THESIS PROJECT PROPOSAL
STEVEN P. WALKER
CANDIDATE FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF LANDSCAPE ARCHITECTURE COLLEGE OF ENVIRONMENTAL DESIGN UNIVERSITY OF COLORADO AT DENVER
PROJECT TITLE: PARKS AND OPEN SPACE STUDY
TOWN OF MEEKER, COLORADO
Submitted To: Mr. Gail G. Gunter
Instructor, L.A. 700-701
Submittal Date: December 17, 1981
Prepared For: Eastern Rio Blanco County Parks and Recreation Commission, Rio Blanco County, Colorado
Professional Advisor: William W. Bohnoff, A.S.L.A.
Respectfully Submitted:

Steven P. Walker


INTRODUCTION
Applicant:
Steven Patrick Walker
The applicant is a 3rd-year graduate student in the Landscape Architecture Program within the College of Environmental Design at the University of Colorado at Denver. The applicant received a B.A. in Environmental Biology from the University of Colorado at Boulder in 1972 and expects to receive a M.L.A from the University of Colorado at Denver in May, 1981.
Qualifications:
The applicant has been a resident of Colorado for 12 years and has over 9 years of academic and professional experience in environmental biology, environmental resource management, regional and community planning and site design. In 1971, the applicant was a team menber on a study of the impact of the Winter Olympic Games, then to be held in Denver in 1976. This study was funded by the Rockefeller Foundation. In 1972, the applicant was project director of a second interdisciplinary study funded by the Rockefeller Foundation entitled: Residential Development in the Mountains of Colorado, A Survey of Issues. During periods from 1975 through 1977, the applicant worked for a planning firm in Boulder and was involved in environmental management and planning for Nederland, Colorado, a small mountain community 16 miles west of Boulder. During the summer of 1979, the applicant was a team member on an interdisciplinary study entitled: The Roaring Fork - Frying Pan Study: Land Use and the Community Development Process. This study centered around Basalt, Colorado and was part of the Western Rural Communities Program funded by the Kellogg Foundation. In 1980, the applicant did his internship at Phillip E. Flores Associates, Inc., a Denver firm specializing in landscape architecture, land design and environmental planning. The applicant's resume may be found in the last section of this proposal.
Major Participants:
1. ) Eastern Rio Blanco County Parks and Recreation Commission,
Rio Blanco County, Colorado: This 9-member commission manages parks and recreation for the entire eastern portion of Rio Blanco County. 3 of its members are from Meeker, 3 from the school district and 3 from the county at-lar-ge. The commission is chaired by Mr. Robert Myers, an outdoor recreation planner for the Bureau of Land Management's White River Resource Area. The Commission's endorsement of this project may be found in the last section of this proposal .
2. ) Mr. Jon Schler: Rural Community Development Director, Div-
ision of Impact Assistance, Department of Local Affairs,
State of Colorado. The Division Of Impact Assistance is the primary sponsoring and funding agency for this project.
Mr. Schler works out of the Department of Local Affairs in


Grand Junction.
3.) Steven P. Walker Additional Participants:
1. ) Town of Meeker, Colorado, Mr. Frank Freeman, Town Mana-
ger. Meeker is the county seat of Rio Blanco County and the primary community in the study area.
2. ) Rio Blanco County Planning Department, Meeker, Colorado,
Duane Rehborg, County Planner. Rio Blanco County has the county planning jurisdiction within the study area.
3. ) Bureau of Land Management, White River Resource Area,
Meeker, Colorado. The public lands adjacent to Meeker are within the jurisdiction of the Bureau of Land Management.
4. ) Center for Community Development and Design, Collgge of
Environmental Design, University of Colorado at Denver. CCDD, in conjunction with the Western Rural Communities Program, is co-sponsoring this project.
Professional Advisor: William W. Bohnoff, A.S.L.A.
Mr. Bohnoff is currently Vice-President and a Principal Landscape Architect with Phillip E. Flores Associates, Inc. in Denver. Mr. Bohnoff received his B.L.A. from Michigan State University and has more than 12 years of professional practice in the private sector. Mr. Bohnoff has been involved in a wide range of project types and sizes throughout the world and is currently registered as a Landscape Architect in Australia, Ohio and Florida. Mr. Bohnoff's endorsement of this project may be found in the last section of this proposal.
In addition, other landscape architects and planners, both in academic and private practice, have agreed to advise on this project.
Description of the Study Area:
The study area centers around the Town of Meeker, Colorado. Meeker is the county seat of Rio Blanco County and is located approximately 40 miles north of Rifle on State Highway 13* Meeker is about 66 miles by road northwest of Glenwood Springs ( see location map ).
The study area includes a region of approximately 25 square miles surrounding the community. There shall be 3 scales of investigation within the study area of this project:
1. ) Region- the Town of Meeker plus adjacent county lands not to exceed a 5 mile radius surrounding Meeker.
2. ) Town- those lands within the incorporated city limits of Meeker and including those lands that have been newly annexed and those lands likely to be developed and annexed in the near future.


3») Parks- specific park sites within Meeker will also be investigated.
The Town:
The first known inhabitants of the area were the peaceful, nomadic Ute Indians. An Indian agency was established in I878 on the White River near the present Town of Meeker. When a settler, Nathan Meeker, attempted to move the agency onto a Ute horse racing field, the Utes became bitter and war ensued.
While troops north of town were defeated, Utes attacked and killed Meeker and 9 members of his party. Shortly after what became known as the Meeker Massacre, an army fort was established in what is now Meeker. Over the years Meeker prospered as a ranch supply town serving farms and ranches that had spread out along the fertile White River Valley. In 1885, Meeker became the first incorporated town in northwestern Colorado.
Today, Meeker is a small rural farming community of approximately 2,^00 people. Meeker's population is a diverse mixture of long-time residents and newcomers involved in farming and agriculture, ranching, energy-related services, governmental work, support services etc.
Meeker lies adjacent to the White River within the White River drainage basin in a partially mountainous portion of eastern Rio Blanco County west of the Flat Tops Primitive Area. Meeker's attractive setting encourages visitation. The area provides a wide range of outdoor recreation opportunities and there are large areas of public land for backcountry use. The river, the surrounding mountains and views to more distant mountains are a strong amenity to this rural community. In addition Meeker has both developed and undeveloped parks including park land on the White River. Additional assets include a community swimming pool and the Rio Blanco County Fairgrounds.
The Region:
Meeker lies within the White River drainage basin in eastern Rio Blanco County. There is an elevational drop as one moves from east to west across the region as Meeker lies between the more mountainous areas and the Flat Tops Primitive Area to the east and the more sparsely vegetated hills and slopes to the west. The White River drainage system traverses the region moving water west into the Colorado River System. There are large amounts of public lands within this region, mostly under the jurisdiction of the Bureau of Land Management.
Traditionally the region has had an agricultural base as the fertile valley bottoms have made good farm and ranch land. However, the energy resources within Rio Blanco County are receiving increasing attention as the world energy situation worsens. There are coal deposits immediately west of Meeker and the northwest border of the C-A Oil Shale Tract is further west. In addition there are areas of probable uranium deposits within the region ( see maps at end of proposal ).


The White River and vast public lands attract many visitors and recreationists to this area. Meeker is a service community to many of these visitors who travel through the area.
Situation:
The exploration and development of coal and oil shale in the area and the belief by many that oil shale development may significantly expand is intensifying growth pressures in Meeker and the region. There is an increased demand for housing and related services and the demand may increase dramatically should energy development intensify. Currently there is new development activity north of Meeker and a proposal for a 1200 acre development mortheast of town that would greatly expand the community's size and population. Some projections place the Meeker population at as much as 1^,000 within 5 to 8 years.
Meeker faces many of the boomtown problems typical of the small rural community when subjected to intense growth pressures.
The town is being asked to review more development proposals and make more land use decisions while increased demands are being placed upon its physical and social services.
Demands are also being placed on existing park and recreation facilities and there is a need for new facilities to handle existing and future demands. In short, there is the need for a total community development process in which parks and open space lands become an important element.
As Meeker is the service community for eastern Rio Blanco County, increased growth within the region will place additional growth pressures on Meeker. This may further intensify parks, open space and recreation needs.
NEEDS ASSESSMENT
Broad Scale Problem Definition:
In the most direct sense Meeker and Rio Blanco County together need the capability of planning, designing and managing a parks and open space system in conjunction with a comprehensive recreation plan for both the eastern Rio Blanco County recreation area as well as the Town of Meeker. Town and County should share common goals and objectives for both to benefit by county and community decisions. A parks and open space system is part of a larger land use concept and for the parks and open space element to be strong, the overall land use concept must also be strong. The land use concept is implemented by a community development process involving comprehensive land use planning, annexation policy, subdivision regulation, zoning or an alternative to zoning, performance standards etc.. Meeker and the region need this land use development process, a strong land use concept, a parks and open space system management plan in conjunction with a comprehensive recreation plan and the specific implementation and funding strategies to see the results


and benefits. The problem is obviously intensified when growth and demand pressures are high and there is inadequate front-end assistance for this timely planning.
Problems Within the Scope of the Project;
More specifically, Meeker, Rio Blanco County and the Eastern Rio Blanco County Parks and Recreation Commission need the concepts and tools to plan, design and manage a parks and open space system in conjunction with a comprehensive recreation plan and to understand how this system relates to an overall land use concept and ultimately a community development and land use planning process. This process starts with conceptual planning and moves toward specific implementation and funding strategies.
Specific criteria are needed to define and designate open space lands and how these areas relate to overall land use patterns. At the town level, a conceptual park system plan is needed to develop a systematic hierarchy of town parks and recreation facilities to serve every user need and community neighborhood. An understanding of what each park should provide and how each park relates to and links with other parks is needed. In addition, design objectives and design criteria need definition for each park.
Opportunities:
There are several factors that represent opportunities to park and open space development. 1.) The natural beauty of the region and Meeker's setting are a great asset to open space and park design. The slopes and mountains, access to the Flat Tops Primitive Area to the east, the White River and public lands all present opportunities for recreation and parks and open space planning and design. 2.) Within Meeker there are existing parks and recreation facilities, undeveloped parks and the potential for new parks. In addition, there are natural conditions that provide opportunities for park and open space linkages. 3-) The Eastern Rio Blanco County Parks and Recreation Commission has the organizational capability and the mandate to assist the community and county in coordinating and improving; park and recreation facilities. The community currently has a park and recreation budget of approximately $109,000 per year. Over time this budget will increase with community growth. There is also the potential for Oil Shale Trust Fund money and additional severance taxes on coal and oil shale develop ment that could provide substantially larger sources of funding for park and recreation development. There is also a proposal for the creation of a recreation district for Eastern Rio Blanco County that would be funded by a special tax assessment. Over time, such a tax base could provide very adequate funding to plan, design and manage a comprehensive park, open space and recreation plan. There is also the potential for aid in the form of matching grants etc. to further bolster financial support. ^.) Most importantly, there is general regional and community support for park and recreation planning. The


human resource is the most important element in any planning effort and this is no different in Meeker and eastern Rio Blanco County. There is the existing structure and organization to plan and implement a course of action and the applicant in this proposal feels capable of working with this structure .
No Action Alternative:
If no action were taken to change the present course of events, park and recreation development would no doubt continue. However, with the lack of an overall concept for park, open space and recreation planning and design, it would be difficult to achieve a hierarchy and continuity between parks and facilities. Also, the lack of this concept and a comprehensive process would make^proposal review and day-to-day operational decisions more difficult. In addition, without a plan, it becomes more difficult to determine design objectives and design criteria for any individual park. Without this comprehensive process plan it is also more difficult to present a logical and defensible argument for additional funding sources.
PROJECT GOALS AND OBJECTIVES
Goals;
1. ) To provide a community service to the people of the Town
of Meeker and a service to eastern Rio Blanco County that is also educational for the community, region and the applicant.
2. ) To provide the conceptual framework, understanding and
some of the baseline information necessary to develop a system for the planning, design and management of a parks, open space system in conjunction with a comprehensive recreation plan.
3. ) To provide a service to the Town of Meeker and eastern Rio
Blanco County that optimizes and respects natural features and opportunities, is sensitive to social need and benefits the health, safety and welfare of community and area residents.
Project Objectives;
1. ) To assist in the development and enhancement of community
involvement, support and leadership and to assist in strengthening the organization and effectiveness of the present r park and recreation commisssion.
2. ) To show the contextual framework of park and open space
planning, design and management within the overall concept of comprehensive land use planning, recreation planning and the community development process.
3. ) To provide suggested goals and objectives for regional open
space parking planning and design.


^.) To provide suggested criteria and guidelines for regional and town open space and park designation.
5«) To provide at least two alternatives to regional open space and park planning.
6. ) To provide suggested goals and objectives for town parks
planning and design.
7. ) To provide suggested criteria and guidelines for town park
planning and design.
8. ) To provide at least 2 alternative concepts for town park
planning and design.
9. ) To provide suggested specific design objectives and design
criteria for 2 town parks.
10. ) To provide conceptual site development plans and illustra-
tive sketches for 2 town parks.
11. ) To provide a suggested scenario for implementing, funding
and phasing a parks and open space system.
Educational Objectives;
1. ) To gain additional experience in site planning and design
and in the application of landscape architectural processes, methods and techniques in regional and community planning and design.
2. ) To gain additional experience in process-level planning and
design.
3*) To gain additional experience in community involvement and public participation techniques.
The applicant is in the opinion that the above objectives are adequate to implement the previously stated goals. These objectives also address the problems stated in the needs assessment.
METHODOLOGY:
This project will be a 5 month effort. With the submittal of this proposal and the initial problem definition and the establishment of project goals and objectives, the first phase and the first 1 month are now complete. The remainder of the project shall be managed in four 1 month phases. The following is an outline of tasks to be completed in each phase, the completion date and the specific products to be submitted on the completion date. In addition there is an indication as to which of the stated objectives are being dealt with in context of the overall project process.


Phase 1 Background and Planning Context:
Completion Date: Feb. 1, 1981
* Investigation of historical background to area and community-land use
* Investigation of existing situation and refined problem definition
* Study of the relationship of parks and open space planning to the total community and regional development process
1. ) review of existing land use planning process
2. ) review of existing zoning and annexation policy
30 review of applicable zoning and subdivision regulations
* Analysis of parks and open space as a core element in a total land use concept
* Completion of background research
* Preparation of base maps and title blocks, regional, town and site scales
Products
* Summary report and recommendations based upon above investigation
* Base maps and title blocks
This phase of the study covers objectives 1 and 2.
Phase 2 Regional Open Space Planning:
Completion Date: Mar. 1, I98I
* Defining open space
* Defining goals and objectives for open space planning and design
* Reviewing existing information on recreation and social needs
* Investigation of present growth and land use trends
* Environmental constraints and opportunities slope/topography
soils/geology
vegetation
hydrology
special and unique features aesthetic/visual resources *
* Establishment of suggested design criteria for open space
8



*>•
designation
* Preparation of 2 alternatives for regional open space
Products
* Summary report to include: goals and objectives for open space planning and design, outline of recreation and social need, analysis of present growth and land use trends, environmental constraints and opportunities and design criteria for open space designation
* Maps displaying environmental constraints and opportunities
* 2 concept alternatives for regional open space planning
This phase of the study covers objectives 3-5*
Phase 3 Town Parks and Open Space Planning:
Completion Date: April 1, 1981
* Defining suggested goals and objectives for town parks planning and design
* Reviewing existing information on recreation and social need
* Environmental constraints and opportunities ( similar criteria as regional analysis )
* Suggested design criteria for town parks planning and design
* Preparation of 2 concept alternatives for town parks planning and design
Products
* Summary report to include: goals and objectives for town parks planning and design, outline of recreation and social need, environmental constraints and opportunities, design criteria for town parks planning and design
* Maps displaying environmental constraints and opportunities
* 2 concept alternatives for town parks planning and design
This phase of the study covers objectives 6-8.
Phase ^ Park Planning and Design:
Completion Date: May 1,1981
* Suggested goals and objectives for specific park planning and design *
* Park site programming
9


* Suggested design objectives and design criteria for 2 parks
* Preparation of conceptual designs for the above 2 parks plus illustrative material
Products
* Summary report to include: goals and objectives for specific park planning and design, programming, design objectives and design criteria for 2 parks
* Conceptual designs for the above 2 parks
This phase of the study covers objectives 9 and 10.
In addition an appendix of information will also be prepared to include: 1.) a scenario for the implementation, funding and phasing of a comprehensive parks and open space system 2.) a compilation of specific design elements and materials to be used in park design 3») a suggested plant materials list k.) conceptual design details 5«) a slide file and 6.) a list of resources and references. Please note that the applicant shall keep the originals to all work.
Problem-Solving Process:
It should be reiterated that the overall problem solving process to be employed in this study is to 1.) begin at the regional level and incrementally move to smaller scales 2.) always supporting planning and design decisions at any scale with stated goals and objectives and that 3*) the context of any decision is understood in relationship to all other scales of study. In this manner all goals and objectives, criteria, guidelines and the conceptual plans and designs will be logically and rationally defensible and respond to user needs.
RESPONSIBILITIES:
APPLICANT: The applicant agrees to the following conditions:
1. ) To provide a final document that meets at least minimum
academic standards as established by the Landscape Archtec ture Program, College of Environmental Design, University of Colorado at Denver
2. ) To perform the work, and only the work, as outlined in this
proposal
3. ) To work in cooperation with the Eastern Rio Blanco County
Parks and Recreation Commission and to coordinate and communicate where necessary
k.) To attend all scheduled meetings involving the applicant
5. ) To keep accurate financial records of all project costs
6. ) To meet all scheduled deadlines


CLIENT: The primary client in this project is the Eastern Rio Blanco County Parks and Recreation Commission. The client agrees to the following conditions:
1. ) To provide coordination with town and county agencies and
officials where necessary
2. ) To provide obtainable information where necessary and pos-
sible
3. ) To attend all scheduled meetings with the applicant
4. ) To provide communication and coordination with the appli-
cant where necessary
5«) To review and comment on all completed work FINAL DOCUMENT:
The final document shall be an 8f"X 11" report bound in a 3-ring binder format. The document shall be indexed and include narrative, photographs, graphs, charts, sketches and reductions of all full-size work. The document shall be reproducible by any standard printing or photocopying technology. All graphic standards shall conform to guidelines established by the instructor. All materials and methods used in preparing the document shall be of high quality. In addition, 1 set of colored full-size drawings shall also be prepared and photographed for presentation purposes. The applicant agrees to make an audio-visual presentation of this project upon its completion. Copies of the final document shall be provided to the university and all direct participants.
It is the intention that the final document retain a flexible format that may be changed or expanded as needed.
RESOURCES:
Individuals: Several individuals, including academic and professional people are direct or indirect project participants and have agreed to assist in an advisory capacity.
Agencies and Organizations: Those agencies and organizations most actively involved as a resource are 1.) Eastern Rio Blanco County Parks and Recreation Commission 2.) Town of Meeker 3*)
Rio Blanco County Planning Department 4.) Bureau of Land Management- White River Resource Area 5«) Division of Impact Assistance, State of Colorado and 6.) the College of Environmental Design, University of Colorado at Denver with the Center for Community Development and Design.
Maps: The following map coverage has been confirmed:
1. ) Standard 7.5 minute series USGS topographic maps
2. ) FICA floodplain maps
3. ) Dated aerial photo coverage
4. ) County land use and hazards maps, 1:50,000 1:24,000
11


5*) BLM land ownership 1:2^,000 6.) Municipal map of Meeker
Reports/Documents: Several planning reports and documents and background data relevant to this project are available from the Town of Meeker and the Rio Blanco County Planning Department. Additional reports are available from the Center for Community Development and Design, Auraria Higher Educational Center and the Department of Local Affairs. In addition, several related studies are available from the HUD libraries. A preliminary draft of a recreation study for eastern Rio Blanco County is also pending.
Needed Resources: The resources most needed for this project are 1.) community support 2.) an understanding of recreation and social.need 3-) an understanding of environmental con- a sttaints and opportunities. Community support exists for this project and there is sufficient existing information on recreation and social need. There is some existing information on environmental constraints and opportunities and the applicant shall generate needed additional information.
Materials and Equipment: The applicant has all necessary drafting and photography equipment for this project. The funding source shall cover the cost of all paper, mylar, film and non-reusable materials.
Support Services: The Center for Community Development and Design shall provide all necessary typing services and shall work with the Division of Impact Assistance in handling financial arrangements.
Information Storage and Retrieval:
1. ) Project notebook- all research material, correspondence,
notes etc. shall be kept in an indexed project notebook
2. )-All full-size drawings shall be kept in a protective flat
ffile
3. ) All slides shall be kept in a protective file or protec-
tive plastic covers
EVALUATION:
Process:
The evaluation process begins with on-going project review by all project participants involved. As the project is partially educational and involves the introduction of concepts and planning processes, this on-going review serves as an evaluation tool. Post-project evaluation will make it possible to see if all stated project goals and objectives have been dealt with.


Evaluation Criteria:
* Have the stated goals and objectives been met?
* Is there general understanding and support for the process and findings of this study by the participants?
* Does this document provide the baseline information, conceptual understanding and framework for further action?
* Will this document aid in on-going planning, securing additional funding sources and in possibly creating a special recreation district?
PROJECT TIME SCHEDULE:
Phase Completion Date
1. Background Research and Planning Context Feb. 1, 1981
2. Regional Open Space Planning Mar. 1, 1981
3* Town Parks and Open Space Planning Apr. 1, 1981
4. Conceptual Park Designs May 1, 1981
Preliminary Project Presentation May 1, 1981
Final Project Presentation May 15, 1981
PROJECT FUNDING AND BUDGETING
Funding for this project is being provided by the Division of Impact Assistance, Department of Local Affairs, State of Colorado and the Center for Community Development and Design, College of Environmental Design, University of Colorado at Denver, for the reimbursement of all direct expenses.
Anticipated Needs:
Travel: 8 trips to Meeker @ 520 miles per trip
@ .20 per mile..................................$ 832.00
Meals: 35 meals @ 4.00 per meal........................ 140.00
Long Distance Phone Calls................................. 75*00
Film and Processing...................................... 100.00
Base Map Photography..................................... 400.00
Equipment and Materials................................... 150.00
Photographic Reduction and Half-Toning.................... 200.00


Reproduction of Final Document
50 copies offset, 100 pages including
paper costs etc...................................... 800.00
Binders and covers................................... 150»00
TOTAL PROJECT COST.......................................$28V?.0Q


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303-388-5351
PHILLIP E. FLORES ASSOCIATES, INC. i83N.madisonst. Denver Colorado80200 October 31, 1980
Mr. Gail Gunter Professor, School of Environmental Design University of Colorado at Denver 1100 14th Street Denver, Colorado 80202
Dear Gail:
This letter is to advise you that I have agreed to act as a "Professional Advisor" for Steve Walker, for the duration of his thesis project.
The project, presently titled "Master Plan for Parks, Greenbelts, and Drainageways, Meeker, Colorado", has been described to me by Steve and does have my endorsement as an adequate challenge and worthwhile project for the Community of Meeker.
I am looking forward to working with Steve on this project and providing guidance as may be requested or required. I would also welcome your input as to limitations which might be appropriate in my role as advisor.
WWB/bp
LANDSCAPE ARCHITECTURE
LAND DESIGN
ENVIRONMENTAL PLANNING


Eastern Rio Blanco County Parks and Recreation Commission
4
Mr. John Schler Dept, of Local Affairs 940 Main St.
Grand Junction, CO 81501
Dear John:
I'am writing to reiterate our request for assistance in completion of a Master Plan for the proposed Eastern Rio Blanco Metropolitan Parks and Recreation District. As you know, we've had capable help by Vince Hooper, our temporary planner, with regard to the "nuts and bolts" of the plan. However, we now have need for someone with design skills to refine and graphically illustrate the Master Plan.
You have mentioned the possibility of providing an intern from Colorado University. If this is the case, an intern would be perfect for our needs. We would be more than interested to per-sue this further with you.
RM:sjw
i
NOV 10 198

Eastern Rio Blanco County Parks and Recreation Commission
P.O. Box 599 Meeker, CO 81641
Mr. Steven P. Walker ' 510 Columbine Denver, CO 80206
Dear Steve:
This is to confirm our agreement made December 12, 1980, with regard to your study proposal summary. The Commission feels fortunate to receive your timely services, so as to enhance and round out the proposed Parks and Recreation Master Plan. It is our hope that this study benefits us all.
Robert E. Myers Chairman


RESUME
May 1980
STEVEN PATRICK WALKER
Personal Information;
Age: 30
Residency: Boulder-Denver area, 12 years Marital status: single Health: excellent Mailing address: 510 Columbine
Denver, Colorado, 80206 Phone: (303) 399-5129
Educational Background:
M.L.A. Landscape Architecture University of Colorado, Denver expected date of graduation- May 1981
B.A, Environmental Biology University of Colorado, Boulder 1972
Ridgefield High School Ridgefield, Connecticut 1968
Honors:
President, UCD Chapter American Society of Landscape Architects April 1980- April 1981
Vice-President, UCD Chapter
American Society of Landscape Architects
April 1979- April 1980
Senior Pacesetter Award University of Colorado, 1972
Societies:
UCD Student Chapter Member
American Society of Landscape Architects
National Student Affiliate Member American Society of Landscape Architects
Scholarships:
1979-1980 Traveling Scholarship
Colorado Chapter American Society of Landscape Architects March 1980
Grants:
The Roaring Fork- Frying Pan Study: Land Use Planning and the Community Development Process, funded by the Kellogg Foundation, June 1979- August 1979


Residential Development in the Mountains of Colorado: A Survey of Issues, funded by the Rockefeller Foundation, Project Director, June 1972- December 1972
Economic and Environmental Impact of the 1976 Winter Olympic Games: Alpine Events ( Colorado ), funded by the Rockefeller Foundation, June 1971- August 1971
* all 3 investigations were performed by 6-man interdisciplinary teams
Other Assignments:
Team member, Bandelier National Monument Study, cooperative design studio between the UCD Landscape Architecture Program and the Denver Service Center, National Park Service January 1980- May 1980
Researcher, writer, editor, Boulder County Planning Project, College of Environmental Design, University of Colorado, Boulder, 1975
Project Airquarius, Environmental Center, University of Colorado, Boulder, 1971- 1972: funded group involved with air pollution and transportation research, steam and electricar development, Project Co-Director; Winter Olympics Transportation Management Project, Airquarius representative to the 1972 Winter Olympic Games in Sapporo, Japan
Employment Experience:
The Roaring Fork- Frying Pan Study, funded by the Kellogg Foundation, June 1979- August 1979
Assistant Planner, Karle Seydel and Associates, Land Use Planning Consultants, Boulder, Colorado, June 1976- August 1977
Assistant Planner, Synersign Inc., Planning Consultants,
Boulder, Colorado, June 1975- August 1975
The Residential Development Study, funded by the Rockefeller Foundation, June 1972- December 1972
The Winter Olympics Study, funded by the Rockefeller Foundation, Junel971- August 1971
Publications:
Assessment of Alternatives for Development Concept Plans,
Bandelier National Monument, New Mexico, with others, UCD-DSC National Park Service
The Roaring Fork- Frying Pan Study: Land Use Planning and the Community Development Process, with others, funded by the Kellogg Foundation, August 1979


Natural Resource Areas, Nederland, Colorado, with others,
Karle Seydel and Associates, prepared for and funded by the Town of Nederland, Colorado, and the State of Colorado Land Use Program, 1978
Geologic Hazards and Constraints, Nederland, Colorado, with others, Karle Seydel and Associates, prepared for and funded by the Town of Nederland, Colorado, and the State of Colorado Land Use Program, 1978
Regional Resource Inventory, Nederland, Colorado, with others, prepared for and funded by the Town of Nederland, Colorado, and the Department of Housing and Urban Development, 1975
Residential Development in the Mountains of Colorado: A Survey of Issues, with others, published by the United Banks of Colorado, Inc,, 1973, several segments of this report were reprinted in issues of Ecology Today
Economic And Environmental Impact of the 1976 Winter Olympics: Alpine Events, with others, University of Colorado Press, 1971
Travel:
I have traveled in Canada, Japan, England, Germany, France,
Italy, and Turkey, as well as throughout the United States
Description of Duties:
I have been involved in many aspects of planning and landscape architectural design at regional, town, and site specific scales. I have experience in environmental research and analysis and in the preparation of background planning documents and maps.
I have been involved in planning issues including the analysis of community services and facilities, housing, sewage treatment, questionnaires and citizen participation. More recently I have developed experience in several aspects of site planning and design. I have experience in both private office and government situations.
Skills:
* General information- gathering techniques
* Writing, editing, proof- reading
* Graphics and the preparation of presentational materials
* Design presentation
* Photography
* Planning and site design skills
* Public and citizen participation techniques
Career Objectives:
I have strong interests in physical site design as well as environmental resource planning and management as related to site specific, community and regional planning and design.
I am especially interested in the mitigation of environmental problems as related to sensitive physical site design and land use planning. At this time I wish to further my experience in
a private office situation.


Full Text

PAGE 1

PARKS AND OPEN SPACE STUDY WN OF MEEKER, COLORADO A+P I D ENVIRONS LD 1190 PARED FOR THE EASTERN RIO BLANCO w347 UNTY PARKS AND RECREATION MMISSION

PAGE 2

gARKS AND OPEN SPACE STUDY -TOWN OF MEEKER, COLORADO AND ENVIRONS Prepared for the Eastern Rio Blanco County Parks and Recreation Commission May 1981 l lllllllllllllllllll l lllllllllllllllllllllllllllllll/11 / II/IIIII 3 1204 00255 5515 ENVIRONMENT, L DES GN AURARIA LIBRARY -u .. -. .. L. • ,.. __ ... , THESIS PROJECT Steven Patrick Walker --. ! ' . ... ........ _, •t t I I .. I I 1 This study was prepared as thesis project in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Landscape Architecture, College of Environmental Design, University of Colorado at Denver Submittal Date: 15 May 1981

PAGE 3

t • FUNDING his project was funded by the Division of Impact Assistance, State Department l o cal Affairs under a contract with the Town of Meeker. operating partners in the development and carrying out of the project include e Town of Meeker, the Division of Impact Assistance,the Western Colorado Rural ities Program, the Center for Community Development and Design, University Colorado at Denver. KNOWLEDGMENTS addition the author would like to thank the following individuals for eir generous and timely assistance in the preparation of this study. * William B. Bohnhoff, A.S.L.A., professional advisor * Lynn Murphy, coordinator, CCDD * Robert Myers, chairman, Eastern Rio Blanco County Parks and Recreation Commission * Dan Schler, professor, UCD * Jon Schler, Division of Impact Assistance, Department of Local Affairs, State of Colorado ....

PAGE 4

OF CONTENTS INTRODUCTION " Propos a 1 . Intention of Study Clients f Project Organization Analysis Factors Primary Focus of Study " Assumptions Recommendation-Making Language Problem Definition/Needs Assessment REGIONAL ANALYSIS Introduction to the Region Rapid Change Existing Situation ker Terrace Proposal County Planning Policy County Growth Guide ounty Zoning nty Subdivision Regulations ironmental Constraints ironmental Opportunities ker Terrace Analysis ional Open Space Planning ional Open Space Concept t ions own Zoning oncept Meeker 8000 wn Subdivision Regulations ement. in Land-Use Plan acility Analysis own Analysis eeker Terrace Analysis oncept Development Concept 1 Concept 2 own Concept 3 ecommenda tions 3 4 5 7 9 10 11 12 13 14 18 21 21 22 23 24 25 26 28 31 33 34 36 37 40 41 43 45 46 47 48 50 52 53 54 55 i i

PAGE 5

PARK DESIGN Development Goals and Objectives Design Goals and Objectives Site Facility Programming Problems/Potentials Schematic Design Design Details APPENDIX 60 60 61 R 63 iii

PAGE 6

TO MAPS AND PLANS lysis Factors nty Growth Guide nty Zoning Implications ironmental Constraints ironmental Opportunities ker -Meeker Terrace Relationship ional Open Space Concept n Zoning ker Concept Plan il i ty Ana 1 ys i s n Analysis n Concept 1 k System Development Plan n Concept 2 k System Development Plan 2 '1 Concept 3 k System Development Plan 3 thills Neighborhood Park A B c D E F G H I J K L M N 0 p Q R iv

PAGE 7

INTRODUCTION

PAGE 8

QUOTES * The best community ... is that which provides the best environment for the experience of living. * 11Planners, to be effective, must not be imposed fr001 above on the premise that the planners know what's good for the planned. The small minority whose job it is to prepare the plan must find out not only what can in fact be technically achieved, but what it is the plan ned want. 11 Cecil Stewart, The Prospect of Cities, London, 1952 11The best plan ... is one that recognizes its limitation in itself; that planning for everything includes freedom from the plan as one of the greatest things to plan for.11 Percival and Paul Goodman, Communities University of Chicago Press, Chicago, 1947 11Nothing great was ever achieved without Ralph Waldo Emerson 2

PAGE 9

PROPOSAL The original proposal for this study and a brief summary proposal can be found in the appendix of this document. As well as being an academic re quirement, this proposal represented the best possible interpretation at the time of its writing of the scope and needs of this study based upon the student's and the clients' understanding. For those unfamiliar with the original proposal, problem definition, needs assessment and background information, please refer to the proposal in the appendix. What follows is the application of this proposal to the real situation at hand. The very nature and philosophy and most importantly, the process employed in this study, is one of inherent flexibility and response to diverse, changing and complex human needs. A comparison of tme original proposal and the final product will yield a clear picture of the student's and clients' ponse to these changing human needs and increasing public awareness and involvement. is comparison of proposal and product, or more importantly, process, will erve as an effective evaluation tool in terms of the original technical in ention of the study and its application. Just as important, the study will elp in the identification of new understandings and awarenesses gained by sponding to public/human needs in an impacted community experiencing unsual and significant social and physical problems. 3

PAGE 10

INTENTION OF STUDY This study is a continuing step in both a . short and long term process of developing a comprehensive parks, open space and recreation master plan for the Town of Meekerand eastern Rio Blanco County. The specific intention is to evaluate and aptly use all previously developed recreation and land use planning data and put this information into physical form for the purposes of discussion, evaluation, review and revision. It is the intention of the project to provide enough suggested direction and specific recommendations to provide a future course of action. At the same time, and equally importantly, the study is a means of attempting to address specific human needs, and problems and to demonstrate opportunities and constraints to dealing with these needs and problems. Part of this problem and its solution is one of providing a clear awareness of a total community de velopment and land use planning process of which this study is but a part. In short, this study is meant to be an education for both its author and the clients and ultimate users of parks and open spaces. It is meant to generate ideas, to show how problems can become potentials and to provide a conceptual framework making day-to-day operational decisions and long range park, open space and recreation decisions easier and more logical. It is meant to result in positive action. As explained in the proposal, the primary of this study is the need for planning and design assistance in energy impacted communities, of which Meeker is but one. It is also . the need for public involvement, long range community development process and intensive recreation, parks and open space planning in a high-growth community where social needs become central. This study is not a parks and open space plan for Meeker and eastern Rio lanco County. It is not a physical plan that is high delineated and rrnmn"nied by a set of clearly defined goals, objectives and policies that e to be formally adopted by the town council and planning commission of eker and the Eastern Rio Blanco County Parks and Recreation Commission. or an outside consultant, working part-time, to attempt such an effort in 4-month period, would be beyond a reasonable scope of services. ker and eastern Rio Blanco County have a complex history of studies, plans, side assistance, projections, etc. and have become rightfully cautious of e surveys, studies and plans. Such studies lack any really substance ithout community leadership, public involvement, concern and enthusiasm all sectors influences in any way by such efforts and decisions. It is e intention of this study to be sensitive to this planning history and to elp foster enthusiasm for the ongoing development of a superior parks, open pace and recreation plan based on human need, constantly changing problems nd true public involvement. 4

PAGE 11

CLIENTS Ostensibly the primary client for this project is the Eastern Rio Blanco County Parks and Recreation Commission who is mandated with initiating and managing the development for parks and recreation within eastern Rio Blanco " County centering on Meeker. The Commission thus acts as the coordinating agency. To be truly significant and effective such a planning effort should also involve: 1) the Meeker Town Council; 2) the Meeker Planning Commission; 3) the Rio Blanco County Department of Development; 4) the Northwest Regional Council of Governments; 5) the Bureau of Land Management; 6) the Department of Energy; 7) the energy companies; 8) the Department of Local Affairs (state); 9) additional federal and state agencies and any special interest groups who chose to participate. The list could go on. It would be a difficult accomplishment to coordinate these groups effectively and many in Meeker and the County have tried at various levels of scale and with varying degrees of success in the past. But who is this study really for? This study is for all those people who use and appreciate the qualities of life afforded by parks, open spaces and recreational opportunities. It is for those people who need and would use these amenities now and for those people to come. It is for the resident and the future resident. It is for the visitor. It is for the young and the old. Simply, it is for the PEOPLE and their special and diverse needs. This is why public involvement at all levels is essential. 5

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DESIGN AND PLANNING PROCESS

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PROJECT ORGANIZATION is a detailed account of . the project organizaton in the proposal in the proposal in the appendix to this document. It is briefly summarized here. INITIAL RESEARCH: This was a preparatory period previous to the writing of 1 the formal proposal and involved initial meetings with the client, town and unty planning officials and included general field inspections. FORMAL PROPOSAL: Following the initial research was the preparation of the formal proposal which involved a determination and analysis of the needs assessment as presented to the author, refined problem definition and project organization. PLANNING BACKGROUND: As part of the proposal preparation and regional and town analysis, the author also investigated the existing planning and growth plans and documents available as a means of understanding the context within which this study lies. REGIONAL ANALYSIS: The study area for the purposes of this study was deter-to an area of approximately 40 square miles surrounding Meeker. e primary concerns at the regional scale were: 1) growth trends related Meeker; 2) existing county and town regional planning; 3) regional en ironmental opportunities and constraints and; 4) general regional qualities hat would affect both regional and town park, open space and recreation lanning . N ANALYSIS: The study then moved from the regional scale to the Town of er ncorporating the important elements identified at the regional scale. e analysis elements at the town scale included existing zoning, planning nd concept growth guide information as well as an analysis of existing and sible future facilities and a town-scale design analysis. RK D IGN: In addition, a conceptual design was prepared for the 12th et ne borhood park as the park is ready to be constructed at the sent time. The design fits into the framework established at the town cale and also begins to explore design and construction methods and terials that may be utilized in other town parks. 7

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PROJECT ORGANIZATION INITIAL RESEARCH FORMAL PROPOSAL J'LANNING BACKGROUND EGIONAL OPEN SPACE JOWN PARK SYSTEM PLANNING DESIGN

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. ANALYSIS FACTORS • At its simplest level there were seven major analysis factors utilized in the planning and design process of this study: 1) SOClAL NEED: The current and future park and recreation needs analysis \'las in the final steps of revision at the start of this project. It was the result of a 7-month effort involving a recreation study and the application of national recreation standards to assumed population projections for Meeker and eastern Rio Blanco County. That study in conjunction with this study shall lay the framework for a comprehensive master plan for open space, parks and recreation for eastern Rio Blanco County. The rec reation needs analysis, although constantly changing and in a state of revision, was essentially complete at the start of this project and is utilized throughout. 2) PLANNING CONTEXT: As previously mentioned an analysis was made of both regional and town plans, regulations and documents as a means of under standing the planning and communtty development framework for this study. 3) DEVELOPMENT PATTERNS: The primary consideration here was the anticipated and encouraged directions of growth most likely to occur adjacent to Meeker. Based upon anticipated (though speculative) population project ions for Meeker and eastern Rio Blanco County and. the proposed Meeker Terrace planned unit development, certain important determinants of town and regional park planning were identified. 4) DESIGN CONSIDERATIONS: Essential to the actual development of concepts and plans for regional open space, town park system planning and park design was an analysis of certain design factors and considerations that provided the basis for the development of the concepts. Several of these considerations are presented throughout the course of this study. ENVIRONMENTAL OPPORTUNITIES: An analysis was made identifying all primary environmental opportunities for park, open space and recreation planning and design at both the regional and town scales. ENVIRONMENTAL CONSTRAINTS: An analysis was made identifying the most important environmental constraints to park, open space and recreation planning and design at both the regional and town scales. At the regional scale existing information was available from the county. PUBLIC INVOLVEMENT: Although extensive public involvement was not possi ble in this project due to its brevity, logistical constraints and the present community status, the author encouraged public involvement from the start. The author met and presented at both recreation commission and public meetings. e importance of public involvement and the development of community leader hip within the community development process cannot be overemphasized. ere are a wide range of methods and techniques for initiating, encouraging nd managing public participating and different methods are best for ifferent situations. Public involvement can slow plans and actions down ut ultimately results in plans and actions that have been agreed to by sensus and are most likely to succeed. 9

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FOCUS OF STUDY cer and Rio Blanco County are obviously in a state of constant flux and 1ge. There are planning and design problems and opportunities at every l e from the region down to a spe . cifi'c park site within . the town. It is 'icult to weave open space and park planning and design into a less than lUate comprehensive land use ! plan especially with such diversity of opinion changing recreational and social needs. the process of doing such a study, one becomes immediately aware of all the shortcomings and obstacles within which such a study and ultimately a 1 is supposed to operate. Problems tend to pyramid. to the complexities of the problems as presented in the proposal and the limitation of the consultant, constraints were to be placed on the scope vork in this project. This is explained more fully in the proposal. This iy was highly focused and deals with a limited set of issues. It is neither ;ible to investigate only the planning and implementation realm as a planning ;ultant might nor is it possible to approach the problems and opportunities r as a landscape architect avoiding the planning implementation and finan1 realities. Both needed to be combined. nust be immediately recognized that not all planning and design considera1S could be brought into this study. It would not be possible. Things omitted by choice, others by accident. primary focus of this study was to take existing land use planning and reation data and show possible physical plan alternatives for park and open :e . design and development. This was a design-based study and in reviewing background data, only . that i nformati .on directly relevant to these ign decisions was analyzed and utilized. That focus was necessary and will Jlt in the most appropriate product possible given the practical constraints. 10

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consultant will make every attempt to be. accurate and thorough basing in rnation on the best data available at the time. Infonnation wi.ll be verid whenever possible. ever, due to the brevity of the project,. the focus of tts scope, . the lack some information and the diversity of opinion about population projections financing, it will be necessary to make assumptions based on best judgts and information. No doubt not all the assumptions will be or could be pletely correct and will be subject for discussion and review. This is as should be. The assumptions will then serve to help clarify issues further hopefully speed up the process of goal-setting and implementation. e this to be a final master plan for parks and open space, making unfounded umptions would be a serious concern. This is not such a plan and the umptions became necessary vehicles for discussion and review. 11

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RECOMMENDATIONS Jn addition to the development of the concepts and plans in.this study. the consultant will make additional observations and recommendations. These frecorrunendations wi 11 1) appear i'n the narrative. 2) be sui11Tlarized or encapsu at certain points within the narrative, and 3} appear in the report summary at the beginning of the document. 12

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ANGUAGE Certai . n words are . repeatedly used in thi. s document and for the sake of clarity, they shall be defined here for the purposed of . th1s study , They are used ifferently in various other studies . These are statements expressi ng the ideal result hoped for. They are statements indicating the highest social or functional values or priorities and are based upon problem definition and needs assessment. They can be very functional or more general ized statements of purpose. ectives: These are statements derived from more general goals, that express specific needs to be fulfilled. They do not necessarily address the solution, but more importantly, the need. They should be specific enough to be measurable, observable or explicit and they should be achievable and testable. They should be important, discriminating and prioritized and lead to yet leave flexibility in problem solving. Objectives are the basis for decision-making. olicies: Policies are statements of a specific course of action adopted and pursued in attaining goals or achieving objectives. There are 11policies plans11 that essentially consist of such policy statements. They are specific recommendations for action and are usually formally and legally adopted by sanctioned organizations. iteria: These are specific mandatory requirements derived from object ives and policies. idelines: These are specific voluntary recommendations derived from objectives and policies. 13

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PROBLEM DEFINITION ; A detailed description of the problems identified within . the scope of services of this project may be found in the proposal in the appendix to this document. 'In addition, larger scale problems that affect the context of this study, but are beyond its scope, are also addressed. NEEDS ASSESSMENT For the past year and a half the Easte . rn Rio Blanco County Parks and Recreation Commission with the aid of consultants has been preparing the Eastern Rio Blanco County Parks and Recreation Master Plan. At the beginning of this project t his plan was in the final stages of review and revision and was completed shortly thereafter. In brief, this master plan includes a description of the community, demographic information, an inventory of existing faciltties, programs and management, the results of a recreation demand survey , recreation standards and criteria, parks and recreation requirements and implementation strategies. The most important information from this master plan for the purpose of this study is the determination of parks and recreation requirements. The backround information in the master plan provides an excellent framework for the etermination of requirements, but the requirements themselves provide the specific programming elements necessary to develop the open space and park ystem concepts which are . the intention of this study. The concepts developed in this study accommodate these facility requirements. The following table ists the facility requirements as identified in the master plan by activity ..:ype. 14

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EASTERN RIO BLANCO COUNTY RECREATION FACILITY REQUIREMENTS : Activity Type .Swimming Tennis Ice Skating Outdoor Basketball Softba 11 Indoor Recreation ommunity Park ighborhood Parks Jll1ller c i a 1 Recreation Short-Term (Immediate} Requirements Conversion of the existing swill1lling pool to an indoor, year-round pool. Provision of amenities for out door pool activities. Construction of two (2) lighted tennis courts. Improvement of one existing ice site. Construction of two (2) regulatio n , lighted baske t ball courts. Development of two (2) lighted softball fields with supporting facilities Construction of an indoor recreation center to include: Two (2) harldball/racquetball courts Exercise/weight equipment Exercise/Dance Room Ping Pong Tables Pool/Billiard Tables Locker Facilities Expand the community park by eig h t acres, to a total of 18 acres. Develop nine acres of neighborhood parks Movie Theatre (Indoor) Movie Theatre (Outdoor) Roller Skating Facility (Indoor) Miniature Golf Skateboard Park Nightclub Medium-Term (To 11,500 Population) Requirements Enlargement of existing pool or construction of an additional out door pool. Construction of four (4) lighted additional tennis courts. Enlargement of the ice skating site. Improvements to existing courts. Development of two (2) additional lighted softball fields. Possible expansion of the facility to in clude a gymnasium Develop an additional 40 acres of community park, for a total of 58 acres. Develop an additional 20 acres of neighborhood parks for a total of 29 acres. 15

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In addition to this list of needed facilities there is an additional aspect of not addressed here. It is one of specific concern to towns such as Meeker, towns facing potentially overwhelming growth. Recreation becomes especially important in areas experiencing intense growth. Many of the energy-related -workers arriving in the region are from more urbanized areas where organized ,recreation is provided and need similar facilities in eastern Rio Blanco County. Experience has shown in other communities experiencing high growth, the lack • of park, open space and recreation amenities has resulted in social problems, delinquency, crime, etc. 16

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REGIONAL ANALYSIS

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IE REGION is a brief history of the physical and social development of Meeker and !rn Rio Blanco County in the original proposal so there is no need to rette such history here. !rms of park and open space design . there are several natural features, tcteristics and qualities that provide both opportunities and constraints tysical planning and design. Many of these same physical opportunities :onstraints obviously dictated the town' s original location and subsequent opment across the surrounding terrain. ific features immediately came to attention in terms of design : ! River: The river provides an unusual recreational and aesthetic 1rce to the community and at the same time is a major obstacle to develop across to the south (whether desired or undesired) . >nal Context: Meeker and eastern Rio Blanco County abound with open ! and recreational opportunities for the woodsman. Many physical and tl needs are already fulfilled, but others within the community and :yare not . The regional growth pressures that Meeker will face only 1er compound the problems. 18

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>pes, Mountains and Drainageways: Although Meeker sits within the White er Drainage basin, with its essentially flat fertile agricultural floodin, the town is contrasted to the west and north by steeper slopes and ntains. Again these are both an amenity and a constraint to certain types development. Sulphur Creek and Anderson Gulch provide significant oppor-ities and constraints. Unstable soils are not uncommon in the area and t be investigated at a site specific level. 1 9

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• rid Landscape: The relatively flat, non-irrigated, arid land primarily to he east and northeast of the town represent another obvious opportunity for evelopment and recreation but also would provide complexities in coordinatng such recreation, parks and open space planning . This should obviously prime concern in reviewing . the Meeker Terrace especially in ight of parks and open space planning. This proposal is looked at more subsequently in this study . 20

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APID CHANGE k . er and eastern Rio Blanco County are being _ th.rust forward with _ the pros t of rapi . d growth. This cre .ates many real and inmediate . de.si.gn and plann-problems which are compounded by inadequate up-front assistance in terms money and staff. It is further compounded.when planners and designers are er time pressure to produce and make specific, quick operational decisions en inadequate and inaccurate background information and constantly changing ds and desires. In addition public involvement at all stages is essential make any pol i .cy or plan really work. ker and eastern Rio Blanco County can handle both the immediate and ge problems if: A) they rapidly develop a conceptual framework for land planning. This has essentially been attempted with. the Meeker Concept 0 plan, and B) develop a sound, long-range, truly comprehensive planning, d use and design process that actively involves the public. purpose of this study is to provide the rapid conceptual framework for a ks and open space system plan to provide for immediate needs as well as ating a sound framework for continuing work. It must be recognized that h work is of little value if not coordinated with an overall comprehensive nning process, both a short-range and long-range effort. XJSTING SITUATION . complete problem definition and needs assessment may be found in the pro al section and will not be reiterated here. The consultant finds it to 11 be an accurate evaluation. : need for establishing an overall parks and open space framework quickly already been emphasized. It must be also emphasized that this is not a al plan . but the outline of a process that incorporates suggestions and umptions always open to review and critical evaluation . example, the Meeker Terrace Proposal is at this time exactly that, a ' posal. However the possibility of its final acceptance and the signifi• t land planning and design and recreation planning considerations that . ld come into play require it being seen as a reality in at least one con ' t alternative of this study. 21

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MEEKER TERRACE PROPOSAL The Meeker Terrace project is a proposal for a 1,388 acre planned unit develop1 ment 3/4 of a mile northeast of the Town of Meeker. The property is owned by Doyle and Everett Berry. The proposal is an anticipated response to a projected housing and service demand to satisfy the needs of energy companies operating in the Piceance Creek Basin. Meeker1S population has doubled in the last four years. The developers are anticipating a surge in housing demand as a result of Meeker1s proximity to major oil shale and coal projects planned by several corporations and companies. The accompanying map indicates the relative size and location of the Meeker Terrace project to present Meeker. The tract represents the most logical direction for growth near Meeker as development is limited to the north and west by steep slopes and to the south by the White River floodplain and the Mesa. The project is not contiguous t@ trne town and, therefore, cannot be annexed to the town until the invervening land is also annexed. Both the developer and the town government are in the opinion that this intervening land will soon be annexed permitting annexation of the Meeker Terrace properties. The developers this project are Bar-70 Enter prises located outside of Meeker. Planning consultants for the project include Oblinger-McCaleb of Denver. If the projected employment needs of the energy companies are accurate, Meeker will face a boomtown growth condition until the year 2000 with a population of 16,593 according to the Northwest Regional Council of Governments. The Meeker Terrace proposal, at the present time, accommodates 5,534 housing units with a potential population of 16,120. The project area could also expand to accommodate additional growth if necessary. The project includes 431 acres of open space, 25 acres for parks, 120 acres for schools, 8 acres public, 66 acres for light industrial, 80 acres of business, 110 acres of mobile homes (596 units), 193 acres of multi-family 261 acres of single family clustered, etc. (1,480 units) and 173 acres of single family detached (732 units). Currently, negotiations are in progress on the water and sewer systems. developers feel that the project will go to construction within a year. studies and additional design work are underway at this time. The Planning 22

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PLANNING POLICY ' , A master plan was prepared for Rio Blanco County by the Rio Blanco County Planning Commission in 1976. Several of the policies and programs directly relate to and encourage coordinated park and recreation development. The following are specific relevant policies with associated programs for action. 1) 11Coordinate County planning and zoning with that of the towns of Rangely and Meeker.11 This encourages a cooperative framework for park and open space planning and also encourages or almost necessitates public involvement and coordination between agencies and commissions. 2) 11Encourage development of less desirable agricultural lands when necessary for expanding urban areas or other development purposes.11 This, in fact, says preserve prime agricultural lands from development. This could be an important cri.teria in determining open space goals and objectives. 3) 11Avoid land use conflicts between existing airports and the expanding towns.11 This is of prime importance in evaluating the Meeker Terrace proposal and its relationship to the existing Meeker Airport. Also important is park and recreation planning within the PUD relative to the airport. The Meeker Airport is located directly in between Meeker and Meeker Terrace. 4) 110iscourage development in natural hazard areas.11 This is only logical and reasonable from a standpoint of economics, health, safety and public welfare. The plan refers to floodplains specifically. There are others. This also has open space goal and objective implications as will be demonstrated later. 7) 11Recognize, avoid or engineer for unsuitable soils.11 This has the same implications as the previous policy. 11Preserve and enhance the existing economic base of the County in such areas as agricultural, tourism, recreation, hunting, fishing, wildlife, and visual amenities.11 In terms of programs, the County Planning Commission should, when applicable, have proposal review powers in regards to the adverse and positive aspects of development proposals that could affect the above policy . As well, they should encourage utilization of those valuable assets of the County. The implications for park and open space design and development in this policy at the regional, town and park site scale are obviously far-reaching and at one level extend beyond the scope of this study. Several of these issues will be dealt with in more detail later. )) 11Continue an active program of citizen invol.vement in the planning Utilize citizen advisory groups to continue a forum for citizen participation. This point has been adequately addressed previously. It is especial ly important with regards t o park planning and design which must closely link with the real human needs. lthough the plans and policies are designed to promote general quality land se control, the plan must be seen as an interim, process-level document. 23

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COUNTY GROWTH GUIDE In terms of evaluating possible development areas around Meeker, the County Master Plan clearly encourages eastern expansion as opposed to across the White River to the south. In terms of general development as well as park planning and design the ad vantages and disadvantages of eastern and southern development are listed below. These are taken from the County Growth Guide. Eastern Expansion Areas Advantages: * natural extension of utility systems * good relationship to school systems * land * low visual impact on existing town * suitable soils Disadvantages: * requires relocation of airport * linear relationship to existing town/downtown * through-town access to oil shale projects Southern Expansion Areas Advantages: * reinforces centrality of downtown Disadvantages: * major bridge(s) required * opens White River floodplain for development * major change in elevation/steep bluffs * major utility costs * irrigated agri cultura 1 1 and 1 os t * distance from schools * high visual impact on town * through town access to coal fields. It should be understood that these considerations are for general development opportunities and constraints and not specifically parks and recreation but generally apply to many recreation facilities. It should also be understood that what is a constraint to general development in one area may be a recreation opportunity at the same time and of course the opposite is also true. The plan is a beginning to a cooperative relationship between the county, the recreation commission and the Town of Meeker for coordinated open space, park planning and design. The following sheet displays the County Growth Guide. 24

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:OUNTY ZONING h e following sheet indicates current county zoning surrounding Meeker nd some general notes and implications. f primary concern in evaluating zoning implications is the determinaion of what type of development is encouraged where and what impacts ould thus result. s can be seen on the map, much area is not zoned. It is interesting to ote that there is also not a clear connection between the growth guide and oning ordinance in terms of residential zoning. The growth guide favors astern expansion and yet a major residential area is zoned to the south f the river. n general there is little county land-use control, the zoning ordinance is ermissive and there are large amounts of private holdings including ad acent to the White River. There is no clear overall land use concept for growth or town expansion as indicated by the ordinance. There is lso no preservation or conservation zoning and the 0 or open zoning disricted is utilized only in zoning the airport. 25

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r .SUB-REGS the Rio Blanco County Subdivision Regulations there are several f ordinances, goals and references directly applicable to the dedication and maintenance of parks and open space within county developments. The effectiveness of these requirements obviously lies within the review and revision -powers of the County Planning Commission at the proposal phase of projects and the implementation and maintenance of such requirements within the subdivision or planned unit development. section 401.3, the purpose of the regulations, several specific references are made to orderly, efficient and integrated land development, the promotion of the health, safety and general welfare of the residents, a concern for public improvement plans and programs, adequate design standards, the prevention of loss of life and injury from natural hazards and the necessity "to preserve natural vegetation and cover and promote the natural beauty of the country." These are specific references to design standards as well as general references to quality of life issues. Specific reference is made to the provision of adequate space for the future development of parks within the county. Within the regulations for planned unit developments (Puo•s), flexibility is encouraged for a more efficient allocation and maintenance of open space. The PUD "shall not contain less than five (5) acres and regardless of size shall provide thirty (30) percent of the total area to be dedicated or reserved for •open space• land, exclusive of required parking and Within mountain subdivisions specific concern is raised in the mitigation of pollution, fire hazards and geologic hazards. In dealing with all the subdivision types covered within these regulations, the proposal review process mandates the accurate mapping of all natural features as part of the official proposal review process. Within section 406.10, Public Sites and Open Spaces, three specific ordinances directly relate to public use lands 1) Five (5) percent of the grass land area of the final plat shall be dedicated to the public for schools and parks . . Any area so dedicated will be maintained by the County. 2) Five (5) percent of the gross land area of the final plat be reserved through deed restrictions as open space, the maintenance of which shall be ensured by specific obligations in the deed of each lot within the subdiv i sion. This alternative shall not be utilized for Puo•s. 3) Five (5) percent of the full market value of the gross land area in the final plat at the time of final plat submission, to be paid over by the subdivider to the Board, to be used by the Board for the acquisition and development of land and sites for schools and parks ... The county subdivision regulations set specific design standards for park and space development as well as indicate general quality-of-life concerns. If properly utilized, they are the basis for action for actual park designa tion and development as well as the establishment of criteria for county open pace designation. 26

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r [f properly utilized, they are the basis for action for actual park designa tion and development as well as the est ablishment of criteria for county rpen space designation . • 27

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NVIRONMENTAL CONSTRAINTS primary concern to the location and function of parks and recreation ilities and open space areas are those constraints which e a threat of personal injury or property (structural) damage. Obvious what may be an environmental constraint to general development may be an ironmental opportunity to recreational uses. r constraints were investigated as being significant to park and open ce planning and design: steep slopes 100-year floodplain unstable slopes soils se constraints are constraints to general development and were obtained m the Rio Blanco Department of Development. They apply as constraints most structural recreation and park facilities. EP SLOPES as equal or in excess of 20% slope were mapped out. These areas would be ficult to build on without additional costs and problems . Generally these are to the north and northwest of Meeker, much of it under BLM managet. 28

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FLOODPLAIN e 100-ye ar floodplain for the White River and Sulphur Creek were also mapped. lrt of this information was the result of an engineering study performed for 1e town and the remainder interpolated. Although expensive structural facilies should not be placed within the floodplain, several recreational uses are ) propriate . Informal parks, bikeways, paths and ballfields can be appropriate oodplain uses. STABLE SLOPES as subjec t to rockfall, potentially unstable slopes and landslides were also pped out. Such areas are unsuitable for intensive or structural development obvious reasons, but may serve as a recreational amenity to back country es, wilde rness trails, visual resources, etc. 29

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OILS oils information was not mapped as a majority of the soils in the study area ere found to be either subject to swelling or corrosive to steel or concrete. ark and recreation site development involving earthwork, drainage, foundations, tc. must be field checked and mitigated for these specific problems. he following map graphically displays and summarizes this information. 30

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' • ENVIRONMENTAL OPPORTUNITIES Several regional and town features and characteristics were identified as opportunities in one form or another for park, open space and recreation develop ment. These features are graphically displayed and summarized on the following map. The White River: The river provides a visual, functional and recreational resource to the region as well as the community. It is an important distinguisning feature and provides many opportunities to park and recreation developJTJent. Sulphur Creek: The creek provides an opportunity as an open space corridor and pedestrian connection to the north and the ponds are both a visual amenity as well as recreational opportunity. Meeker Ditch: Meeker Ditch could provide the backbone of a trail system through town although such development would be difficult as the ditch runs through backyards and under streets. Floodplai n: As mentioned previously, there are several appropriate uses for floodplains including: open space, informal parks, bikeways, paths and ballfields. The floodplain also acts as a visual amenity emphasizing the river corridor. 31

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BLM Lands: The BLM lands to the north and west of town provide natural open space and backcountry uses and are a visual amenity to the town and region. China Wall: This geologic formation which really defines the edge of the BLM lands to the north and west of Meeker is an attractive visual resource and part of the character or quality of the community. It should be maintained as a visual resource. Anderson Gulch: The gulch provides a natural break in the Wall and pedestrian access from the town into the BLM lands to the northwest. This connection whould be maintained. Meeker Dome: This geologic formation provides an identifiable feature and a vantage point to the town and region. Rural Open Space: The vast amounts of open spaces surrounding the community and characteristic of the region provide the rural quality and historic natural setting of the town. Views: There were found to be many significant views of the surrounding land scape, the river, the C h in a Wall etc. from many points on the highways, withi n the community and from specific park sites. As Meeker faces the possibility of extensive growth, the open space areas presently found adjacent to the community on both the west and east sides take an additional importance. These lands should be recognized for their visual, recreation and open space qualities and should not be precluded to housing development. The lands to the east of town on the intervening parcels between Meeker and the Meeker Terrace proposal area became especially important in terms of possible recreation uses, open space corridors, pedestrian and bikeway connections, etc. 32

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MEEKER TERRACE ANALYSIS The Meeker Terrace proposal is looked at as both a regional and town scale impact in terms of parks, open space and recreation planning. The magnitude of the anticipated development will have substantial influences on both the region and the town. At the regional scale the proposed development would increase the population of the town by more than 7 times its present 2,400 to in excess of 16,120. would also be a shift in population centers to the east and northeast of the present community. In addition, the intervening land would have to be annexed, permitting the annexation of Meeker Terrace, opening up additional land for development. In terms of regional county land-use planning, the proposal area represents ) the logical direction for growth and is supported by the County Growth Guide. Specific planning and design consideration regarding the PUD will be dealt " with in the town analysis. However, at the regional scale, it is safe to say that the proposal would have a dramatic planning and design impact on parks and recreation as it essentially represents a new town center by virtue of its size and potential population. Its relationship to the existing community, in terms of physical and social cohesion, becomes critical and is dealt with in the town analysis. 33

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" OPEN SPACE PLANNING DEFINING OPEN SPACE The words 110pen space11 take on a variety of meanings to different people. The • term open space does in fact have a range of meanings and implications. Obvi ously what is considered open space to someone living in a city is not likely similar to the perceptions of someone living in a small rural community surrounded by millions of acres of open space. Because land is maintained as open space says nothing of its productivity. Open space does not mean unused or devoid of human evidence. Any of a variety of uses including farming, ranching, mining, timbering and active and passive park and recreation development may be considered open space uses. An exact definition of open space use designations would be difficult and beyond the scope of this study. It is I the intention here to introduce the importance of the concept. The term is best thought of in terms of its function. Open space is a land use type that serves a variety of functions to Meeker and eastern Rio Blanco County. FUNCTIONS OF OPEN SPACE 1) To maintain a rural atmosphere in eastern Rio Blanco County and Meeker and to maintain and enhance community identity: A great part of the appeal and attractiveness of eastern Rio Blanco County and Meeker is the rural, pastoral quality created by open space land uses. 2) To protect resources, both natural and man-made: Open space lands may be used to protect and manage timber, wildlife, mineral and energy resources, water, etc. In addition open space land-use designations ma y be used to protect man-made resources such as historic sites and buildings. 3) To maintain visual and aesthetic resources: The scenic environment of eastern Rio Blanco County is due in large part to the vast amounts of open space lands tn public and private holdings. Open space designation r can be used to protect scenic corridors. 4) Control development in unsuitable areas: Lands unsuitable for development due to floods, soil conditions, rockfall, avalanche, landslide, wildlife, etc. can be placed in open space designation and prevented from development. 5) To provide recreational resources: Depending on the nature of the open space lands, these areas are highly suitable for a wide range of park and recreation uses. The following are some suggested goals .and objectives for the designation of open space lands within eastern Rio Blanco County. They are provided to show how open space goals and objectives may be stated. 34

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OPEN SPACE GOALS , * To designate certain open space lands within eastern Rio Blanco County and around Meeker to maintain and enhance the rural quality of the area. * To designate certain open space lands in and immediately surrounding Meeker to maintain and enhance the rural and historic quality and the sense of identity within the community. t • * To use open space land planning and design as a core element in new subdivision and PUD development. * To use open space land planning and design as a key tool in linking and/or buffering new development with historical Meeker. f * To use open space lands to utilize fully environmental opportunities and serve social need to parks and recreation. * To use open space lands as a land use control device to prevent development in environmentally unsuitable areas and yet permit suitable parks and recreation uses as dictated by social need. OPEN SPACE OBJECTIVES * To coordinate open space land planning and design between Rio Blanco County, the town of Meeker and the Eastern Rio Blanco County Parks and Recreation Commission. * To develop and implement an open space plan as a key element in the Rio Blanco County Master Plan, Town df Meeker Comprehensive Plan and the Parks and Recreation Master Plan. * To strengthen open space land designation powers at both county and town levels enabling better control of the selection and intended use of such lands. * To use open space lands to link park and recreation facilities, provide pedestrian corridors, matntain viewsheds, buffer incompatible land uses, maximize natural features, and provide for social needs related to the above. * To use open space land-use designation to prevent unsuitable development in areas of natural and geologic hazards, environmentally sensitive areas and to maintain the most important viewsheds. 35

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OPEN SPACE CONCEPT :As a means of understandingthe regional context for a parks and recreation system for Meeker and tbe area it is important to look at regional land-use. Based upon the previous analysis information and the suggested goals and objectives, a concept for regional open space management was developed and is graphically displayed and summarized on the following map. : The primary intention of the concept ts to develop a regional open space system that 1) maintains and enhances the rural quality of Meeker and the region, 2) provides a physical linkage between Meeker and the region and 3) provides Meeker with lands suitable for present and future park and recreation development. r The concept elements are summarized below: 1) Park and Recreation Needs: * provides for a trail/bikeway along the White River. * provides for hiking and backcountry access into the BLM lands northwest of town. * investigates 2 important open space areas directly west and east of town as possible recreation sites. 2) Environmental Opportunities: * trail system along the river is an optimum floodplain use. * the property along the river on the south side east of South Park represents a possible recreation acquisition area. * access up Anderson Gulch (BLM access) is maintained. * Meeker Dome is recognized as a resource worth preserving. * the rural quality on the mesa south of the White River is preserved. 3) Land-use Implications: * provides for recreation lands between Meeker and Meeker Terrace and in close proximity to existing town facilities. * provides for optional rec . reation development areas on the west side of town and south of the White River. * provides for open space areas that help buffer and maintain the rural qualities characteristic of Meeker and the region. 36

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:The following is a list of general recommendations based upon the previous , review of county planning and design regulations affecting park, open space and recreation development. These recommendations are certainly far from complete, and are subject ot review and evaluation. They also do not fully address the real planning complexities, politics and financial aspects and it is also realized that some of these recommendations have been attempted in 1 the past or are presently in progress . • General: * Involve the public: everyone including all governmental agencies and commissions, special interests and anyone willing to participate. * See this study as a workbook, a flexible tool to be changed, added on to, deleted from, expanded, etc. * Accept the problem that both short and long needs must be met. This requires rapidly establishing the conceptual framework for the long range planning and will help prevent short-range mistakes that become long-range nightmares. * At any scale of investigation, attempt to truly understand what the real problem is, not just the symptom of the problem. The solution then derived will be far more successful. Only when the real problem is under stood can the real need be addressed. County Planning Policy: * The 11master plan .. or growth guide must be seen as an on-going, flexible, changing document. Much of it is out-of-date and incomplete and cannot respond to the complexities of what is happening currently. * Policies for open space and park designation and management must be more explicit and yet flexible permitting the county, in coordination with all other entities, to take a powerful role in protecting their most important interests. County Planning Policy for Meeker: * There needs to be more active coordination/integration between county and town to simultaneously develop and implement planning and design decisions reinforcing both town and county planning policy. This is not occurring presently. * Presently the county plan is almost 11neutral'' to the Meeker Plan and particularly the Meeker Terrace proposal. Though the county favors eastern expansion, not all county concerns are being truly addressed. Neither the county nor town are in a position to effectively evaluate the Meeker Terrace proposal relative to an overall land use concept. 37

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' :county Zoning: ' ' * County zoning provides little real land-use control at the large scale. The zoning ordinance does not support either the county growth guide or the Meeker concept plan. : * More control for regional parks and open space designation is necessary. tounty Subdivision Regulations: • * Although many of the regulations that apply to the designation and management of parks and open space are good, the county should explore additional legal options to give them more proposal review powers. . • r • * Consider parks and open space land-uses at both the county and town levels as a care element in any comprehensive land-use plan. Goals, objectives and policies must be established for the designation, dedication, design and management of these lands to reinforce this core element concept. ' • * As with both the recreation master plan and this study, see the system as a constantly changing process where refinement, needs assessment and prioritization may change on a frequent basis. rin terms of park and open space planning and design as related to the present I Meeker zoning ordinance, the 0 or open use district provides an opportunity . ..Jhe 0 district is designated as follows: "The 0 open use district is provided for areas where prohibition of all types of building is desired, for reasons of flood, fire protection, extreme topography, or adverse soil condiUons. Grazing and other agricultural uses are permitted in thts district." -I l Perm1tted uses include: ... • * accessory uses as permitted in Chapter 18.54 of the zoning ordinance ' * agriculture, farming, ranching, forestry * airports automobile parking areas * golf courses , * recreation, but not including residential structures * sewage disposal plants * temporary uses, as permitted in Chapter 18.51 * water storage reservoirs Although this district leaves opportunities for park, open space and recreation Aevelopment, the nature of the development could be highly restricted due to the nature of the site. In many ways it is a restrictive district permitting certatn types of uses because the site conditions may be inappropriate for more conventional development including active park siting. It is also a permissive ,district as it allows for a wide range of uses. 38

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• . TOWN PARK SYSTEM tANNING AND DESIGN ' .

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"TOWN ZONING The accompanying map displays the town zoning ordinance and summarizes the 9esign considerations that were noted. CONSIDERATIONS: t * Higher densities are created on the west and south sides of town in the R-3 and R-3MH zones. The west side of town also lacks park sites . • ,, * There are several undeveloped park sites in the PUD area to the north of town (Sanderson and Sage Hills). * The 0 or open district zoning is poorly defined and too permissive as an ,_ * open use district. The R-3 and H-B districts act as a physical barrier between the downtown • area and the river . .. 40

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MEEKER 8000 e Town Conce t Plan overall goal of this Comprehensive Plan and Development Guide is to keep ker a pleasant community by preserving and enhancing the physical and social lity of life found here today." And so begins the town's growth plan. This tement says a great deal and there are many key words. It is interesting note that value is place upon "the physical and social quality of life found tod " With projected though somewhat speculative population s goa will be a hard one to achieve. recreation, park and open space considerations inherent in such a goal tement should be obvious. Such considerations are core elements in the ervation and enhancement of the physical and social quality of life reed to. is also pointed out that the plan is "a living document which must change grow as the community changes and grows.•• The plan is a process. of the specific goals and policies that directly relate and reinforce planning and design are listed below. It should be reiterated that in e comprehensive planning all major goals and their accompanying policies are rrelated and cannot be evaluated isolated from other goals. This is no erent with park, recreation and open space planning. Considerations that eliminated here are done so only out of the necessity of focus. There 41

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are certain goals and policies which provide specific constraints and opportunities which cannot be fully evaluated within the scope of this project. Land Use Goa 1 s * To create a compact and aesthetic community * To preserve and enhance the existing community as the social and cultural focal point of Meeker * To strive for a continued sensitivity to the natural environment seeking to minimize adverse environmental impacts whenever possible. Commercial Development Goals * To encourage •.. landscaping along highway commercial activities Industrial Development Goals * To encourage the use of frontage roads and other devices to minimize traffic conflicts, and encourage adequate yards, open space, off-street parking, landscaping, and screening to prevent blighting influences. Public and Quasi-Public Development Goals * To encourage public and quasi-public facilities ..• , maintaining adequate and attractive landscaping ... * 11To provide a linked system of playgrounds, city-wide neighborhood parks, and community-wide parks, and open spaces consistent t6 established standards which will improve recreational opportunities and preserve and enhance the natural beauty in and surrounding the town." The last policy deals with the prime focus of this study. It could be rerded, expanded or even condensed, but the real issue is the quality-of-life hat such a policy strives to maintain and enhance. hese policies are the present foundation from which to work. t is understood fully that Meeker is undergoing rapid change and with finanial and staff constraints there are severe limitations as to planning and deign capabilities. However, the Meeker 8000 Plan is, in reality, an incomlete conceptual study, especially in light of attempting to review proposals uch as Meeker Terrace. In terms of parks and open space planning and design he plan is broadbrush and again incomplete. In essence this plan must be een as a starting point for a more highly articulated and delineated compreensive planning process. At this time, it will be necessary for all involved gencies to respond to operational and short-term decisions quickly and this ecessitates developing and utilizing sound overall land-use concepts and licies quickly to prevent regrettable mistakes. following map displays the Meeker Concept Plan. n terms of land-use and design considerations, this concept supports the coungrowth guide but does not provide a clean overall land-use concept for the own. The distinction between park and public sites is confusing and the con ept does not provide a framework for park planning. 42

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OWN SUB-REGS thin the town subdivision regulations there is a prov1s1on for planned unit velopments (PUD). The purpose for such a provision "is to encourage flexi lity and variety in land development, a more efficient allocation and mainnance of open space, and a more efficient use of those public facilities quired in connection with such development." The regulations go on to ecify that the developer must "provide 30% of the total area to be dedicated reserved for open space land, exclusive of required parking and streets." addition there are restrictions within the subdivision regulations within near the 100-year floodplain. important provision is 17.12.070 Areas dedicated for public use: The veloper of any subdivision must dedicate a minimum of 10% of the gross land ea of the fi"nal plat "for various public uses, including but not limited to hools, parks and open spaces .. site selection ts also at the town's scretion. >other subdivision regulations are worthy of note: 17.44.010 Environmental eservation. "The and development of subdivisions shall preserve, in fur as it is possible, the natural terrain, natural drainage, existing topil and trees." 17.44.020 Land subject to hazardous conditions. "Land bject to hazardous conditions such as landslides, mud flows, rock falls, )W avalanches, possible mine subsidence, shallow water table, open quarries, )Ods, and polluted or nonpotable water supply shall be identified and shall t be subdivided until the hazards have been eliminated or will be eliminated the subdivision and construction plans." thin the regulations for mobile homes section 16.04.310 Outdoor recreation eas. 11A. A mobile home park shall provide an amount not less than 20% of e gross mobile home park area for outdoor recreational area or areas. Outdoor recreation areas include, but not by way of limitation, adult :reation and child play areas, and swimming pools, but shall not include eas devoted to guest parking, utilities, drying yards, a roadway, mobile ne space, storage area, nor any area required for setbacks. Outdoor recreation areas shall be located in such a manner as to be free >m hazards and topography incompatible with the purposes of the recreation eas, and shall be conveniently located, where topography and traffic of the )ile home park permits." is obvious that these subdivision regulations and mobile home regulations 1 provide a basis for park design and development and that in addition there a concern for lands unsuitable for conventional/residential development and JS a possible framework for establishing open space criteria. though many of the park and open space regulations that apply, particularly PUD's and mobile home parks, are good, more felxibility and options must be ildt into the system to enable the town to have additional powers when they ed them. The town must also enforce the application of these regulations. 43

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Proposal review and rev1s1on procedures must be thorough and comprehensive to assure town concerns are properly addressed. For example a 30% open space dedication within a PUD can provide usable though possibly underdeveloped park and recreation sites, but not if the 30% dedicated is unusable because of steep terrain, etc. and should not be in consideration as open space within the PUD. 44

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USE ELEMENT 1 arks and open space 11inaster plan11 or plan element in an overall land-use 1prehensive plan can become a central means of achieving and reinforcing 1eneral land-use plan. The open space and park system can be used as a fying .principle or concept in organizing other land uses and at the same 1e serve social need and provide physical buffering where required. Given tain amenities, such as the White Rtver and public domain lands, this is ticularly relevant to the Meeker is difficult to develop a workable physical open space and park plan in a ;uation where planning is in such a high degree of flux and there is not a m concept developed for area land-use. Park and open space design should considered an opportunity to ai'd in the development and reinforcement of overall land-use plan. 45

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ANALYSIS 1AS a means of developing town park system concepts and plans it was necessary to examine and evaluate the existing recreatfon sites. both developed and 'undeveloped, town-owned and school-owned. These s1tes will become the founda tion of park development plan. ,The following map di splays the sttes that were examined and summarizes their status. 46

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I OWN ANALYSIS part of the process of developing town park system concepts, a design alysis of the community was performed. This analysis identified several oblems and potentials to park development and these are summarized below. oblems: The White River Park serves more as a regional park than a community park. This is largely due to the permitted camping. There are problems of conflicting uses and management problems during periods of high use. The river park is not strongly corinected to the river corridor because of private ownership and the lack of a trail system. The highway business district acts as a physical barrier between the downtown area and the river. There are higher housing densities and a lack of neighborhood parks on the west side of town. The new pool is poorly located relative to other facilities or the possibility of site expansion. The pool is on the edge of the exi'Sting community. tentials: There is a physical and social cohesiveness to the community that is evi dent in its attractiveness, neatness and the sense of community pride. There is an excellent opportunity to connect the river park with the river corridor through the use of a trail system/bikeway. There is the potential of creating a strong downtown park/open space area around the courthouse and linking this with the elementary school. This downtown park could be in-turn linked with the river using street closure or planting and construction materials. There is an historic quality in the downtown area. There is the possibility of strong pedestrian connections with BLM lands to the northwest and up Sulphur Creek. There are several possible expansion areas for future recreation develop ment. There are many developed and undeveloped park sites within the community. 1e following sheet graphically displays and summarizes this information. 47

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V\EEKER TERRACE ANALYSIS he Eastern Rio Blanco County Parks and Recreation Master Plan is based upon future or medium-term population projection of 11.500 for the determination f facility requirements. This does not account for the population and needs hat may be generated by Meeker Terrace. n terms of town park planning and design it is critical to understand the lanning and design relationship of Meeker Terrace to the existing community. his relationship must be clearly defined. The Meeker Terrace relationship as several possibilities: ) It acts as a new town center independent of Meeker. ) It acts as a subdivision or planned unit development extension of the existing community and provides many of its own services and facil Hies. It is fully integrated with the existing community. he plans by the developers and the town indicate the desire to annex the ntire project area into the town. If this is the case either option 2 or 3 eems most likely. A decision must be made as to how accurate the population nd buildout projections are for Meeker Terrace and how park and recreation lanning is to be coordinated. Currently studies are underway examining the hysical and social cohesion elements. ndications are that the developers are planning to propose a mandatory home wner's association and manage parks and recreation within this association. hat would be the relationship of this association to the recreation commision or district? If complete physical and social cohesion between Meeker nd Meeker Terrace is wanted. is it desirable to permit a homeowner's assoiation to manage its own parks and recreation within the larger context of he commission or district? t is the judgment of this consultant that it is most desirable to attempt to integrate Meeker Terrace and Meeker socially and physically and that a rimary means of doing this is with park, open space and recreation design Meeker Terrace recreation should be fully coordinated with the own and the recreation commission. The way to achieve this is not through a Jmeowner's association. he proposed development area should be brought into the framework of the irks and recreation master plan in terms of population projections and faciity demands. This would assure adequate facilities for Meeker and Meeker errace. would prevent redundant facilities and would provide both Meeker nd Meeker Terrace with specific overlapping opportunities and responsibilifes. The community and the recreation commission are in a position of power t the present ttme with regards to the Meeker Terrace proposal review and hould see that their best interests are attended to. preliminary plat design has been reviewed although this design is far from fnal or complete. Specific problems were, however. apparent in the overall esign concept. 1) The general development area is linear to the existing 48

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community and not centralized. 2) The airport location becomes very awkward. 3) The potential for highway business expansion becomes likely as there is a long contiguous border between the project and the highway. 4) The main park site indicated is located directly off the end of the runway and 5) Most of the dedicated open space lands are steep slopes or drainageways limiting their use for recreation. Such specific design considerations within Meeker Terrace are very important and should be addressed in the proposal review process. 49

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:ONCEPT DEVELOPMENT a means of organizing and planning town park and recreation facilities 3 ncepts were developed and then a facility plan was generated for each conpt. prtmary concept determinant was the Meeker Terrace proposal and how impornt this development is considered by the community. Concept 1 does not consider the Meeker Terrace proposal as an important factor. Concept 2 rtfally responds to the proposed development and Concept 3 fully responds )Viding the greatest opportunity for physical and social cohesion and inte iti"on. 50

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CHARACTERISTICS WHICH ARE COMMON TO ALL 3 TOWN CONCEPTS: 1) r All 3 concepts or plans support the regional open space concept that has been developed. The important elemerits are the preservation of some open space lands and future recreation development areas on both the west and east sides of town. In addition all 3 incorporate a river trail and corrioor system and look at acquisition of land in the floodplain for recreational uses. The linkages with Anderson Gulch and Sulphur Creek are maintained tn all three as well as the use of the BLM lands northwest of town as open space. 2) All 3 concepts support the County Growth Guide although that admittedly is not saying much. Basically the concepts support existing growth patterns as well as the anticipated growth patterns as encouraged by the County. 3) All 3 concepts attempt to handle both tmmedtate need as well as future need and expansion . areas. This is obviously difficult as there is literally not room for s ome of the needed faci'Hti es sucfi as softba 11 fields, tennis courts etc. until certain lands are acquired or vacated from their present uses or decisions are made to require that certain community facilities are built within Meeker Terrace. 4} Although each concept varies with this regard, each concept, in its own way, supports existing community structure, that is to say the physical layout of the town and its amenities. Each concept varies, however, as to what is really defined as existing community structure as opposed to future community structure. 5) Each concept also develops a park system hierarchy. That is to say that there is a logical progression of community parks Cno regional parks), neighborhood parks with neighborhood playgrounds and totlots incorporated within the neighborhood parks. There should be one main identifiable community park, secondary community parks, etc. The neighborhood parks should serve the needs of the immediate area it is to serve and should not be repetitious. ) All 3 concepts provide for options in terms of expansion areas for recrea tional development, the most important being the Franklin property along the river on the south side. All 3 concepts are capable of preserving the general rural quality of the region and town even with the advent of Meeker Terrace, but only if well thought out and properly implemented. All 3 concepts have specific design elements that are the same. For example, all 3 encourage the development of a court area around the County Courthouse linked with what may be the new town hall and then in turn linking this area with the river park. All concepts encourage the preservation and reinforcement of certain historic qualities found downtown. 51

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r CONCEPT 1 Elements of this COncept: I ( 1) It supports the existing community structure in the sense that is does not really respond to the growth direction to the east and Meeker Terrace. 2) It maintai ns the river park as the prtmary community park and distributes the other faci"ltUes in town, pri"marily the ballfield development to the west side of town. Major Advantages: 1) It accounts for the unique quality of the river park as the matn identifiable park and maintains this as the primary community park. However, all 3 concepts recommend the use changes as have been proposed. 2) By placing ballfield development to the west tt preserves at least part of that land tn somewhat of an open space quality. It also provides a neighborhood use area on the west side of town. 3) As really with all 3 concepts, the expensive structural faciliti"es are kept out of the floodplain provided some floodway mitigation procedures are used to prevent flooding of the County garage site were that land to be used for future recreation development. 4) The area to the west side of town would probably be the easiest and least expensive to develop compared to all of the other sites, with the exception of possible sites within Meeker Terrace. Major Disadvantages: 1) By creating a secondary community park the facilities tend to become dis persed. Also, although the river park is called the primary community park, if it becomes basically a passive park area, it may not be ed the primary community park compared to a more active park somewhere else. This becomes a question of semantics as it is felt the river park will remain the most unique park and thus primary in that sense. 2) The concept basically ignores the most likely pattern of growth if an attempt is really going to be made to bring Terrace into the recre ation district and enforce complete coordination. People in Meeker Terrace are less likely to use a facility on the extreme west side of Meeker. Such development to the west would almost encourage Meeker Terrace to develop their own recreation facilities independent of the existing community. 52

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:ONCEPT 2 jor Elements of this Concept: This concept partially responds to the most likely growth pattern, namely Meeker Terrace. The only significant difference between thts concept and concept 1 is the placement of the secondary community park (ballfield development) to the east side of town, either north . of the existing fairgrounds, on the existing fairground stte, were it to be moved, of the new poo 1 , further east on the i nterventng 1 ands between Meeker and Meeker Terrace or within Meeker Terrace ttself. The possibility is thus created of centraltztng the factlfttes more with the new pool and possible rec center addftion and wtth other faci"ltUes that may be 1 ocated wtthi n thts general area. The concept still reinforces the existing community structure but addres ses the rea 1 i ty of a popul ati"on shi .ft to the This concept also sti"ll considers the river park as the primary community park for the s ame reasons as addressed in concept 1. 1jor Advantages: The concept begins to physically res pond to the growth direction to the east and thus encourages recreation and planning with Meeker Terrace. It will to support a physical andsocial of the existing community and the new development. The concept centralizes the facilities. I This concept, as with concept 1, still considers the river park as the special, unique park within Meeker and calls it the primary community park though intensive recreation development elsewhere may weaken this concept. By utilizing some of the intervening land between Meeker and Meeker race, this also insures the preservation of some open space lands in this area and a possible open space corridor between Meeker and Meeker Terrace. tjor Disadvantages: Some of the areas directly to the east of town would be difficult to de velop as ballfields due to the terrain and drainage. It would not provide park area for the west side of town. Due to the locations of the new pool and the possible rec center addition and the location of the County garage site, were that to be vacated, tt may prove difficult to 1 ink all of these directly to form a true community park with shared common facilities. However, thts would reinforce the river park as the primary community park despite its size and intensity of use. 53

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,CONCEPT 3 . Major Elements of this. Concept: 1) The primary here, as wtth concept 2, is to centralize therecreation facilities in the area of the new pool and the County garage sHe. The pri'mary difference f>etween thi. s concept and concept 2 i . s that a strong attempt i's made to make.this recreation development area the primary community park wtth shared common facilities. However, due to development constratnts, tt may be difficult to strongly link these facilities 2) The concept fully responds to the Meeker Terrace development in terms of di'recti'on of growth. Inherent wtthin this concept is the possibility that some of the faciltties may need to go directly within Meeker Terrace. 3) The concept reinforces the future community structure assumi ng the Meeker Terrace development goes as planned. 4) Although the concept does not change the proposed use of the existing ri'ver park, this park, although still unique, would become a secondary community park in relattonsliip to the population center. Major Advantages: 1) Again, as with concept 2 and even more so, this concept responds to the most likely direction of growth and encourages coordination and cohesion, both socially and physically, with Meeker Terrace. The concept again attempts to centralize the factlities. 2) Although the concept changes the river park to the secondary community park, this may be merely a question of semantics and may actually favor the proposed intended use of thi's area as more of a passive park. 3) Again, as with concept 2, by moving recreational facilities east of town, or in the intervening land between Meeker Terrace, this makes possible an open space corridor between Meeker and Meeker Terrace. Major Disadvantages: Same as concept 2. 54

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RECOMMENDATIONS 1) If it is truly the desire to annex Meeker Terrace into the community and to bring a physical and social cohesion between the two, thus reducing tensions between the present residents and the newcomers, then it is essential to require that Meeker Terrace participate in the recreation district formati"on. As has been stated before, to permit Meeker Terrace to develop their own recreation district or mandatory association that ignores the present community is unwise. This obviously means consider able addi"tiona 1 work. Meeker Terrace would have to be broug ht into the Recreation Master Plan or should it be satd that the Recreation Master Plan would have to be expanded to tnclude Meeker Terrace. This would involve an analysts of new population projections, the preparation of new factltty needs based on the revised projections,and a clear design and planning proceudre to determine what kinds of facilities would need to be provided within Meeker Terrace and whom' they would serve. By this, the town could receive fac -ilities that tt does not have the land for, or possibly the money for,alone. The timing is excellent for this as Bar-70 has not submitted the ftnal proposal and thus would be capable of design changes. It would requtre some rather raptd footwork in terms of politics, planning and design to pull it off. 2} It is on these bases that concepts 2 or 3 are favored over concept 1. Concepts 2 and 3 are very similar. The only significant difference is the interpretation of the river park as the primary community park or a secondary park. Again, this may be strictly semantical. It is felt that the river park is the uni"que feature within the community and should be emphasized as such, especfally with the possibility of a strong linkage with the downtown area as was proposed . However, intensive recreation development elsewhere may weaken this concept as referred to before. 3} The next step is really the selection of an overall concept which might have to include additional studies in terms of bringing Meeker Terrace within the master plan. After this there would be a of final master planning in terms of site facilities, a process of refining in addittonal detail what has already been done. The next step is the pre paration of detailed site plans and construction drawings. This requires establishing priorities in terms of phasing for both what is needed first and what can be afforded first. The detailed master planning and the preparation of site plans and construction drawings is really the job for a professional landscape architectural firm, provided the funds are available. The result would be well worth it in terms of design quality, functionality, maintenance, and long-term costs. 55

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PARK PLANNING AND DESIGN

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PARK DESIGN •The next phase in the town park system planning and design sequenc e i s the ' preparati'o n of c o nceptual or schematic designs for the individual park sites. The follow ing is a schematic design package prepared for the 12th Street park site. It d emonstrates the preliminary site design phase and some o f th e process used to prepare the design. 57

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DESIGN PACKAGE rFOOTHILLS NEIGHBORHOOD PARK Meeker, Colorado Prepared by Steven Walker for the Eastern Rio Blanco county Parks and Recreatton Commission 7 May 1981 Proposed Budget: $16,000

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PACKAGE ORGANIZATION: 1) Development Goals and Objectives 2} Design Goals and Objectives 3} SiteFacility .4} Problems 5} Potentials '6} Design 7} Design Suggesttons 59

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Development Goals and Objectives: 1) Coordinate the design and development of tli .is park with the overall park system development plan that is now being by the Eastern Rio Blanco Parks and Recreation Commission. 2) Create a netghborhood park that incorporates a totlot, playground for older chtldren and an adult resting and supervision area for the use of the immedi'ate netghoorhood. 3} Coordinate development and destgn of this park with the future 11th Street park si'te. 4) To create a park environment whose prtmary concern is for the health, safety and welfare of the ch. ildren who will use it. 5) To provtde adequate and suitable recreation facilities and equipment for the chi 1 dren and adults who wtll use the park. Design Goals and Objectives: 1) To provide safe and efficient access onto the park from the surrounding neighborhood areas. 2) To provide a safe buffer between the park and Pinyon Street to the west and northwest. 3) To coordinate the construction and design characteristics of the park with other town parks, especially the future 11th Street park. 4) To provide a certain amount of buffering and screening of the park from the surrounding neighborhood for the benefit of the park users as well as the surrounding residents. 5} To utilize construction materials that are suitable and compatible with the surrounding neighborhood character. 6) To choose a design, in terms of construction materials and plant materials, that will require minimal maintenance and upkeep. 60

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SITE FACILITY PROGRAMMING: , Totl ot Area: * chair swings for small children ..: 4 i'n a gr oup * sandbox area -should be contatned on a small climbtng structure could place wtthin the area ff tt ts btg enough * slide -a small slide with a soft sand landing area, to probably be used with adult supervision * 2 benchesto be used by adults supervising thei r childrens' play Seating Area: * 4 benches * 1 picnic-type table * small paved surface area * small lawn area Playground Area: * regular swings -4 to 6 tn one untt * slide for older children * climbing apparatus for older chtldren * pos: sibl-y addittonal playground equtpment provtded the budget can provide for it. * 1 or 2 benches for seating 61

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Problems: 1} The site receives generally poor solar exposure. There is a building to the south and the possibility of the construction of another apartment buildi"ng to the north. Tne foothills to ' the west and northwest wi"ll limtt sunHght also. It will be cool: in summer, but cold in the winter. 2) There ts a relatively grade the park site and Pinyon Street to the west and northwest. This could create access, erosion control and construction problems on that part of the site. 3) The of Pinyon Street to the totlot portton 6f the playground will necessitAte some thought to prevent any conflicts between drivers and children approaching the parR or crossing the 4) As with any area tn town, special attention to the soil'scond1tions and drainage are crucial, especially to prevent drainage problems with the apartment building on the south side of the site. Potentials: 1) The natural configuration of the site is excellent for the development of the 2 different play areas which should be separated anyway due to the age differences between the children who will use these 2 areas. The corridor between provides a good place for an adult resting and super vision area that permits observation of both play areas. 2) The location of the park in relation to the apartment buiTding to the south, the adjacent residences and the possible future apartment building to the north, makes it good for serving many children in this immediate area conveniently. 3) There are good views and exposure to the east and southeast of the site. Morning sun should be good. 4) The park's proximity to the future 12th Street park provides an opportunity for a direct path/bikeway between the 2 parks. This would be highly desirable. Consideration should be given to this in the design and development of the lands between the 2 parks to provide for this. There will probably be a street sidewalk connecting the 2 parks; however, a direct connection between the 2 parks between lots would be a nice feature. 5) Obviously there is a nice view of the foothills to the west and northwest. 62

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r l • Design Details: ; Use of plant matertals: * It would be wise in selecting trees and shrubs that only native or im ported species be used -thaiare -suitable to the soils and have a low watering and low matntenance requirement. There are many such species and the CSU Extenston a great deal of informatton on this. There ts no point in selecttng spectes tnat wtll require constant water ing, pruning and care as thts will prove to be costly and tedious over time. * Groundcovers are generally high maintenance plants requtring watering and weeding in order to look attractive and should be avofded. * It is recommended that lawn (bluegrass} areas be kept to a minimum. Although lawns are probably the cheapest, easiest way of covering ground, they are basically high maintenance and require constant watering and cutting to be kept attractive. For ease of maintenance it is desirable that the lawn area be kept in one easily accessible continuous area with few mowing obstables and a mowing strip around any existing obstacles or trees for ease of mowing and to prevent acddental damage to the trees. Obviously lawn areas on steep slopes are difficult to mow and water as the water will tend to runoff and not penetrate the ground surface. * In other areas, where a grass-like surface is desired, it is recommended that a native seed mix like buffalo-grass be utilized. Although such grasses do not look as green and lush as bluegrass, they have many advan tages. They require little cutting, virtually no watering once they are established, are very durable, and can provide the same comf6rts and pleasures of a bluegrass lawn if properly done. * Seek professional assistance in terms of actual planting techniques if there is a problem. Injured, diseased or poorly planted trees and shrubs are likely to die. Irrigation: * Underground irrigation systems are expensive and need constant maintenance and adjustment and are really only valuable in large areas or areas requiring much water. An underground irrigation system is unnecessary for this site as not enough of the park requires watering. Besides, the budget would be heavily dented by such installation. It is recommended that 1 or 2 small water lines be installed onto the site with quick couplers or hose bibs permitting someone to quickly hook a hose or sprinkler onto the bib and do the necessary watering. Even low water requirement plant materials will need care and watering unttl they are established so there must be a means of getting water to these plants. After the establishment period, only the bluegrass area should need constant watering and possibly a small sprinkler system can be installed, operating off of one of the main lines, to handle this area. During periods of extreme drought the low water requirement plants will of course need some water. 63

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r * It is my recommendation that no lighting is necessary on the park as this will be a day-use facility. Also, such night lighting would be a nui sance to adjoining residents and could encourage night-time use inappropriate to the desired purpose of the park. There is no need to run electrical power onto the site. CONSTRUCTION MATERIALS: Use of Stone, Brick and Wood: Jhere are obviously a range of construction materials that may be used for building walls, playground equipment, paving surfaces etc. It is recommended that materials be selected that are similar in characteristic to the natural surroundings and the architecture surrounding the park site. Stone, similar in characteristic to that found indigenous to the region, could make an ex wall and slope control material. Stone may also be used as a paving in areas receiving special attention. Brick may also be used as a wall and paving material and would be appropriate to the site. Wood would probably be the best material for the climbing structures and other details, due to cost and its natural quality. It would need to be pressure treated for water protection for any long-range durability. , concrete: Concrete provides the least expensive paving solution when compared for long range durability. However, when used in excess, concrete can be rather unsightly. Although critical pathways may need to be concrete, asphalt is an alternative in some areas, though not as durable. Large concrete slabs and exposed concrete walls should be avoided when possible. Painting: _ Most wood structures would appear best unpainted and this would be conducive to the natural environment. They must be treated and could be stained. Metal play equipment would look better if painted, provided the color is selected carefully. Bright, gaudy colors are generally unsightly in a setting such as this park. Sand: Sand provides an excellent base for many types of play equipment and prevents injury and drains very well with a proper subgrade. is necessary to provide a raised edge around the sand to prevent kicked around or blown away. Recreation Equipment: as it is soft However, it it from being * There are a great variety of play structures that may be chosen from. Some are quite expensive, so budget concerns must dictate what is best to some degree. Obviously the highest quality and most attractive that can be afforded is the most desirable. Just like anything else, quality pays for itself. 54

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* There are a wide range of play structures involving all sorts of materials that may be manufactured on the site by volunteers if necessary. Old tires, railroad ties, etc. provide many options for building climbing and playing structures. spetial must be to detail to prevent any sort. of hazard or danger of injury to children (natls, sharp protrusions, etc.} Site Furniture: It is felt that wood benches, a wood table and wood trash receptacles are . most appropriate. There are several manufacturers of such items. Such features should be matched in appearance for the sake of design attractiveness. They could also be built by volunteers,as some of these items are indeed expensive. However, the budget should be adequate to cover the cost of some nice site furniture. Signage: It is recommended that a stgnage system be establ tshed far the enti're town park system. There should be an attracttve logo or symbol that is used on all the signs and each individual sign should bear the name of that individual park. A routed wood stgn, somewhat in the sytle of the National Park Service, is what is in mtnd. The sign for the Foothilss Neighborhood Park should follow this system once it is established. A temporary sign may be desirable for the time being. 65

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APPENDIX

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SUMMARY PROPOSAL FOR THESIS PROJECT STEVEN P. WALKER CANDIDATE FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF LANDSCAPE ARCHITECTURE COLLEGE OF ENVIRONMENTAL DESIGN ' UNIVERSITY OF COLORADO AT DENVER NOVEMBER 1, 1980 SUBMITTED TO: Mr. Gail G. Gunter Instructor, L.A. 700-701 UCD Fall 1980 PROJECT TITLE: Parks and Open Space Study Town of Meeker, Colorado PROPOSAL SUMMARY: The candidate proposes to perform a comprehensive study of parks and open space management and design for lands within • and immediately adjacent to the Town of Meeker, Colorado. This study will provide baseline information for a comprehensive plan for the selection, design and management of a parks and open space system to meet the present and future needs of the community and region. MAJOR PARTICIPANTS: 1.) Eastern Rio Blanco County Parks and Recreation Commission Rio Blanco County, Colorado Mr. Robert Myers, Chairman 2.) Mr. Jon Schler Rural Community Development Director Division of Impact Assistance, Department of Local Affairs State of Colorado J.) Steven P. Walker Graduate Student, Landscape Architecture Program College of Environmental Design University of Colorado at Denver ADDITIONAL PARTICIPANTS: 1.) Town of Meeker, Colorado Frank Freeman, Town Manager ' 2.) Rio Blanco County Planning Department Meeker, Colorado J.) Bureau of Land Management White River Resource Area Meeker, Colorado 1

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,... .. 4.) Center for Community Development and Design College of Environmental Design University of Colorado at Denver PROJECT LOCATION: Meeker is the county seat of Rio Blanco County, Colorado. Meeker is located approximately 40 miles north of Rifle on State. Highway 13. Meeker is about 66 miles by road northwest of Glenwood Springs ( see location map). SITUATION: Meeker is currently a community of 2,400 with a possible future population projected to be as high as 14,000 within 5 to 8 years. Located within the energy abundant region of Colorado's northwest, Meeker will experience. impacts as a result of oil shale, coal and uranium exploration and development within the region. These impacts will include increased demand for housing and services including parks and recreation. To meet the present and future parks, recreation and open space needs of the community and region, an on-going, flexible, process type plan for the planning, design and management of a parks and open space system is needed. The system must address regional and local needs, environmental constraints and opportunities, and the planning context within which the system must operate. PROJECT OBJECTIVES: The primary objective of this study is to provide the baseline information and conceptual framework for the development of a workable and flexible system for the selection, design and management of parks and open space lands within and surrounding the Town of Meeker, Colorado. The final document will be a flexible working manual that may be revised and expanded as needed. It will include background data, narrative and graphic information. EDUCATIONAL OBJECTIVES: The primary educational objective of this project is to gain additional experience and expertise in regional, community and site planning and design. In addition, more experience shall be gained in community and public participation techniques. The study shall also investigate and utilize defensible design processes for community development and design and the establishment of goals, objectives, guidelines and critieria. METHODOLOGY: This study shall investigate regional, town scale and site specific elements of park and open space system design and management. The project is seperated into 4 1-month phases. The following is a description of each phase: Phase 1-Background and Planning Context for Parks and Open 2

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Space Planning and Design: This phase involves the initial problem investigation and definition and review of existing information. It is the intent to provide an historical context for parks and open space planning in and around Meeker and to show the relationship of such planning to an overall community development process. Phase 2-Regional Open Space Planning and Design: This phase will investigate regional open space planning and design criteria for Meeker and an area of approximately 5 miles around Meeker to include existing, new and proposed subdivisions. Subjects to be investigated include environmental constraints and opportunities, goals and objectives based upon social need and environmental constraints and opportunities, land use concept alternatives and implementation and phasing strategies. Phase 3-Town Parks and Open Space Planning and Design: A similar methodology will be used to investigate town parks and open space planning and design. Emphasis shall be placed upon conceptual park programming, linkages and relationships and developing a hierarchy of parks within the community. Phase 4Park Planning and Design: This section will investigate specific park site planning, design criteria and design objective development and site programming. Conceptual designs will be provided to illustrate the result of the process. PROJECT TIME SCHEDULE: Phase 1-Background Research and Planning Context 2-Regional Open Space Planning 3-Town Parks and Open Space Planning and Design 4Park Planning and Design * Final Document and Presentation QUALIFICATIONS : see resume attached FUNDING: Completion Date Feb. 1 , 1981 Mar. 1 , 1981 Apr. 1,, 1981 May 1 , 1981 May 15, 1981 $2500 $3000 to be provided from the Division of Impact Assitance, Department of Local Affairs, State of Colorado and the Center for Community Development and Design, College of Environmental Design, University of Colorado at Denver, for the reimbursement of direct expenses incurred, to include: travel, meals, lodging, long distance phone calls, film and processing and direct material and reproduction costs. 3

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THESIS PROJECT PROPOSAL , STEVEN P. WALKER • CANDIDATE FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF LANDSCAPE ARCHITECTURE COLLEGE OF ENVIRONMENTAL DESIGN ' UNIVERSITY OF COLORADO AT DENVER PROJECT TITLE: PARKS AND OPEN SPACE STUDY 1 TOWN OF MEEKER, COLORADO Submitted To: Mr. Gail G. Gunter Instructor, L.A. 700-701 Submittal Date: December 17, 1981 Prepared For: Eastern Rio Blanco County Parks and Recreation Commission, Rio Blanco County, Colorado Professional Advisor: William w. Bohnoff, A.S.L.A. Respectfully Submitted: Steven P. Walker

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INTRODUCTION Applicant: Steven Patrick Walker The applicant is a 3rd-year graduate student in the Landscape Architecture Program within the College of Environmental Design at the University of Colorado at Denver. The applicant received a B.A. in Environmental Biology from the University of Colorado at Boulder in 1972 and expects to receive a M.L.A from the University of Colorado at Denver in May, 1981. I Qualifications: The applicant has been a resident of Colorado for 12 years and has over 9 years of academic and professional experience in environmental biology, environmental resource management, regional and community planning and site design. In 1971, the applicant was a team menber on a study of the impact of the Winter Olympic Games, then to be held in Denver in 1976. This study was funded by the Rockefeller Foundation. In 1972, the applicant was project director of a second interdisciplinary study funded by the Rockefeller Foundation entitled: Residential Development in the Mountains of Colorado, A Survey of Issues. During periods from 1975 through 1977, the applicant worked for a planning firm in Boulder and was involved in environmental management and planning for Nederland, Colorado, a small mountain community 16 miles west of Boulder. During the summer of 1979, the applicant was a team member on an interdisciplinary study entitled: The Roaring Fork -Frying Pan Study: Land Use and the Community Development Process. This study centered around Basalt, Colorado and was part of the Western Rural Com munities Program funded by the Kellogg Foundation. In 1980, the applicant did his internship at Phillip E. Flores Associates, Inc., a Denver firm specializing in landscape architecture, land design and environmental planning. The applicant's resume may be found in the last section of this proposal. I Major Participants: 1.) Eastern Rio Blanco County Parks and Recreation Commission, Rio Blanco County, Colorado: This 9-member commission manages parks and recreation for the entire eastern portion of Rio Blanco County. 3 of its members are from Meeker, 3 from the school district and 3 from the county at-large. The commission is chaired by Mr. Robert Myers, an outdoor recreation planner for the Bureau of Land Management's White River Resource Area. The Commission's endorsement of this project may be found in the last section of this proposal. 2.) Mr. Jon Schler: Rural Community Development Director, Division of Impact Assistance, Department of Local Affairs, State of Colorado. The Division Of Impact Assistance is the primary sponsoring and funding agency for this project. Mr. Schler works out of the Department of Local Affairs in 1

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Grand Junction. 3.) Steven P. Walker Additional Participants: 1.) Town of Meeker, Colorado, Mr. Frank Freeman, Town Manager. Meeker is the county seat of Rio Blanco County and the primary community in the study area. 2.) Rio Blanco County Planning Department, Meeker, Colorado, Duane Rehberg, County Planner. Rio Blanco County has the county planning jurisdiction within the study area. 3.) 4.) Bureau of Land Management, White River Resource Area, Meeker, Colorado. The public lands adjacent to Meeker are within the jurisdiction of the Bureau of Land Management. Center for Community Development and Design, College of J.J Design, University of Colorado at Denver. CCDD, in conjunction with the Western Rural Communities Program, is co-sponsoring this project. Professional Advisor: William w. Bohnoff, A.S.L.A. Mr. Bohnoff is currently Vice-President and a Principal Landscape Architect with Phillip E. Flores Associates, Inc. in Denver. Mr. Bohnoff received his B.L.A. from Michigan State University and has more than 12 years of professional practice in the private sector. Mr. Bohnoff has been involved in a wide range of project types and sizes throughout the world and is currently registered as a Landscape Architect in Australia, Ohio and Florida. Mr. Bohnoff's endorsement of this project may be found in the last section of this proposal. In addition, other landscape architects and planners, both in academic and private practice, have agreed to advise on this project. Description of the Study Area: The study area centers around the Town of Meeker, Colorado. Meeker is the county seat of Rio Blanco County,and is located approximately 40 miles north of Rifle on State Highway 13. Meeker is about 66 miles by road northwest of Glenwood Springs ( see location map). The study area includes a region of approximately 25 square miles surrounding the community. There shall be 3 scales of investigation within the study area of this project& 1.) Region-the Town of Meeker plus adjacent county lands not to exceed a 5 mile radius surrounding Meeker. 2.) Town-those lands within the incorporated city limits of Meeker and including those lands that have been newly annexed and those lands likely to be developed and annexed in the near future. 2

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J.) Parks-specific park sites within Meeker will also be investigated. The Town: The first known inhabitants of the area were the peaceful, nomadic Ute Indians. An Indian agency was established in 1878 on the White River near the present Town of Meeker. When a settler, Nathan Meeker, attempted to move the agency onto a Ute horse racing field, the Utes became bitter and war ensued. While troops north of town were defeated, Utes attacked and killed Meeker and 9 members of his party. Shortly after what became known as the Meeker Massacre, an army fort was established in what is now Meeker. Over the years, Meeker prospered as a ranch supply town serving farms and ranches that had spread out along the fertile White River Valley. In 1885, Meek-/1 er became the first incorporated town in northwestern Colorado. Today, Meeker is a small rural farming community of approximately 2,400 people. Meeker's population is a diverse mixture of long-time residents and newcomers involved in farming and agriculture, ranching, energy-related services, governmental work, support services etc. Meeker lies adjacent to the White River within the White River drainage basin in a partially mountainous portion of eastern Rio Blanco County west of the Flat Tops Primitive Area. Meeker's attractive setting encourages visitation. The area provides a wide range of outdoor recreation opportunities and there are large areas of public land for backcountry use. The river, the surrounding mountains and views to more distant mountains are a strong amenity to this rural community. In addition Meeker has both developed and undeveloped parks including park land on the White River. Additional assets include a community swim ming pool and the Rio Blanco County Fairgrounds. ,., The Region: Meeker lies within the White River drainage basin in eastern Rio Blanco County. There is an elevational drop as one moves from east to west across the region as Meeker lies between the more mountainous areas and the Flat Tops Primitive Area to the east and the more sparsely vegetated hills and slopes to the west. The White River drainage system traverses the region moving water west into the Colorado River System. There are large amounts of public lands within this region, mostly under the jurisdiction of the Bureau of Land Management. Traditionally the region has had an agricultural base as the fertile valley bottoms have made good farm and ranch land. However, the energy resources within Rio Blanco County are receiving increasing attention as the world energy situation worsens. There are coal deposits immediately west of Meeker and the northwest border of the C-A Oil Shale Tract is further west. In addition there are areas of probable uranium deposits within the region ( see maps at end of proposal). 3

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The White River and vast public lands attract many visitors and recreationists to this area. Meeker is a service community to many of these visitors who travel through the area. Situation: The exploration and development of coal and oil shale in the area and the belief by many that oil shale development may significantly expand is intensifying growth pressures in Meeker and the region. There is an increased demand for housing and related services and the demand may increase dramatically should energy development intensify. Currently there is new development activity north of Meeker and a proposal for a 1200 acre development mortheast of town that would greatly expand the community's size and population. Some projections place the Meeker population at as much as 14,000 within 5 to 8 years. Meeker faces many of the boomtown problems typical of the small rural community when subjected to intense growth pressures. The town is being asked to review more development proposals and make more land use decisions while increased demands are being placed upon its physical and social services. Demands are also being placed on existing park and recreation facilities and there is a need for new facilities to handle existing and future demands. In short, there is the need for a total community development process in which parks and open space become an important element. As Meeker is the service community for eastern Rio Blanco County, increased growth within the region will place additional growth pressures on Meeker. This may further intensify parks, open space and recreation needs. NEEDS ASSESSMENT Broad Scale Problem Definition: In the most direct sense Meeker and Rio Blanco County together need the capability of planning, designing and managing a parks and. open space system in conjunction with a comprehensive recreation plan for both the eastern Rio Blanco County recreation area as well as the Town of Meeker. Town and County should share common goals and objectives for both to benefit by county and community decisions. A parks and open space system is part of a larger land use concept and for the parks and open space element to be strong, the overall land use concept must also be strong. The land use concept is implemented by a community development process involving comprehensive land use planning, annexation policy, subdivision regulation, zoning or an alternative to zoning, performance standards etc •• Meeker and the region need this land use development process, a strong land use concept, a parks and open space system management pilian in conjunction with a comprehensive recreation plan and the specific implementation and funding strategies to see the results 4

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and benefits. The problem is obviously intensified when growth and demand pressures are high and there is inadequate front-end assistance for this timely planning. Problems Within the Scope of the Project: More specifically, Meeker, Rio Blanco County and the Eastern Rio Blanco County Parks and Recreation Commission need the concepts and tools to plan, design and manage a parks and open space system in conjunction with a comprehensive recreation plan and to understand how this system relates to an overall land use concept and ultimately a community development and land use planning process. This process starts with conceptual planning and moves toward specific implementation and funding strategies. Specific criteria are needed to define and designate open space lands and how these areas relate to overall land use patterns. At the town level, a conceptual park system plan is needed to develop a systematic hierarchy of town parks and recreation facilities to serve every user need and community neighborhood. An understanding of what each park should provide and how each park relates to and links with other parks is needed. In addition, design objectives and design criteria need definition for each park. Opportunities: There are several factors that represent opportunities to park and open space development. 1.) The natural beauty of the region and Meeker's setting are a great asset to open space and park design. The slopes and mountains, access to the Flat Tops Primitive Area to the east, the White River and public lands all present opportunities for recreation and parks and open space planning and design. 2.) Within Meeker there are existing parks and recreation facilities, undeveloped parks and the potential for new parks. In addition, there are natural conditions that provide opportunities for park and open space linkages. J.) The Eastern Rio Blanco County Parks and Recreation Commission has the organizational capability and the mandate to assist the community and county in coordinating and improv ifu@ park and recreation facilities. The community currently has a park and recreation budget of approximately $109,000 per year. Over time this budget will increase with community growth. There is also the potential for Oil Shale Trust Fund money and additional severance taxes on coal and oil shale development that could provide substantially larger sources of funding for park and recreation development. There is also a proposal for the creation of a recreation district for Eastern Rio Blanco County that would be funded by a special tax assessment. Over time, such a tax base could provide very adequate funding to plan, design and manage a comprehensive park, open space and recreation plan. There is also the potential for aid in the form of matching grants etc. to further bolster financial support. 4.) Most importantly, there is general regional and community support for park and recreation planning. The 5

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• r ... human resource is the most important element in any planning effort and this is no different in Meeker and eastern Rio Blanco County. There is the existing structure and organization to plan and implement a course of action and the applicant in this proposal feels capable of working with this struc ture. No Action Alternative: If no action were taken to change the present course of events, park and recreation development would no doubt continue. However, with the lack of an overall concept for park, open space and recreation planning and design, it would be difficult to achieve a hierarchy and continuity between parks and facilities. Also, the lack of this concept and a comprehensive process would make proposal review and day-to-day operational decisions more difficult. In addition, without a plan, it becomes more difficult to determine design objectives and design criteria for any individual park. Without this comprehensive process plan it is also more difficult to present a logical and defensible argument for additional funding sources. PROJECT GOALS AND OBJECTIVES Goals: 1.) To provide a community service to the people of the Town of Meeker and a service to eastern Rio Blanco County that is also educational for the community, region and the applicant. 2.) To provide the conceptual framework, understanding and some of the baseline information necessary to develop a system for the planning, design and management of a parks, open space system in conjunction with a comprehensive recreation plan. J.) To provide a service to the Town of Meeker and eastern Rio Blanco 8ounty that optimizes and respects natural features and opportunities, is sensitive to social need and benefits the health, safety and welfare of community and area residents. Project Objectives: 1.) To assist in the development and enhancement of community involvement, support and leadership and to assist in strengthening the organization and effectiveness of the present )''. park and recreation commisssion. 2.) To show the contextual framework of park and open space planning, design and management within the overall concept of comprehensive land use planning, recreation planning and the community development process. J.) To provide suggested goals and objectives for regional open space parking planning and design.

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4.) To provide suggested criteria and guidelines for regional and town open space and park designation. 5.) To provide at least two alternatives to regional open space and park planning. 6.) To provide suggested goals and objectives for town parks planning and design. 7.) To provide suggested criteria and guidelines for town park planning and design. 8.) To provide at least 2 alternative concepts for town park planning and design. 9.) To provide suggested specific design objectives and design criteria for 2 town parks. 10.) To provide conceptual site development plans and illustrative sketches for 2 town parks. 11.) To provide a suggested scenario for implementing, funding and phasing a parks and open space system. Educational Objectives: 1.) To gain additional experience in site planning and design and in the application of landscape architectural processes, methods and techniques in regional and community planning and design. 2.) To gain additional experience in process-level planning and design. J.) To gain additional experience in community involvement and public participation techniques. The applicant is in the opinion that the above objectives are adequate to implement the previously stated goals. These objectives also address the problems stated in the needs assessment. METHODOLOGY: This project will be a 5 month effort. With the submittal of this proposal and the initial problem definition and the establishment of project goals and objectives, the first phase and the first 1 month are now complete. The remainder of the project shall be managed in four 1 month phases. The following is an outline of tasks to be completed in each phase, the completion date and the specific products to be submitted on the completion date. In addition there is an indication as to which of the stated objectives are being dealt with in context of the overall project process. 7

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• Phase 1 Background and Planning Context: Completion Date: Feb. 1, 1981 * Investigation of historical background to area and community land use * Investigation of existing situation and refined problem definition * Study of the relationship of parks and open space planning to the total community and regional development process 1.) review of existing land use planning process 2.) review of existing zoning and annexation policy J.) review of applicable zoning and subdivision regulations * Analysis of parks and open space as a core element in a total land use concept * Completion of background research * Preparation of base maps and title blocks, regional, town and site scales Products * Summary report and recommendations based upon above investigation * Base maps and title blocks This phase of the study covers objectives 1 and 2. Phase 2 Regional Open Space Planning: Completion Date: Mar. 1, 1981 * Defining open space * Defining goals and objectives for open space planning and design * Reviewing existing information on recreation and social needs * Investigation of present growth and land use trends * Environmental constraints and opportunities slope/topography soils/geology vegetation hydrology special and unique features aesthetic/visual resources * Establishment of suggested design criteria for open space 8

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• • • • designation * Preparation of 2 alternatives for regional open space Products * Summary report to include: goals and objectives for open space planning and design, outline of recreation and social need, analysis of present growth and landuse trends, envi ronmental constraints and opportunities and design criteria for open space designation * Maps displaying environmental constrailints and opportunities * 2 concept alternatives for regional open space planning This phase of the study covers objectives 3-5 . Phase 3 Town Parks and Open Space Planning: Completion Date: April 1, 1981 * Defining suggested goals and objectives for town parks planning and design * Reviewing existing information on recreation and social need * Environmental constraints and opportunities ( s-imilar criteria as regional analysis ) * Suggested design criteria for town parks planning and design * Preparation of 2 concept alternatives for town parks planning and design Products * Summary report to include: goals and objectives for town parks planning and design, outline of recreation and social need, environmental constraints and opportunities, design criter-ia for town parks planning and design *Maps displaying environmental constraints and opportunities * 2 concept alternatives for town parks planning and design This phase of the study covers objectives 6-8 . Phase 4 Park Planning and Design: Completion Date: May 1,1981 * Suggested goals and objectives for specific park planning and design * Park site programming 9

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* Suggested design objectives and design criteria for 2 parks * Preparation of conceptual designs for the above 2 parks plus illustrative material Products * Summary report to include: goals and objectives for specific park planning and design, programming, design objectives and design criteria for 2 parks * Conceptual designs for the above 2 parks , This phase of the study covers objectives 9 and 10. In addition an appendix of information will also be prepared to • include: 1.) a scenario for the implementation, funding and phasing of a comprehensive parks and open space system 2.) a 1 compilation of specific design elements and materials to be used in park design J.) a suggested plant materials list 4.) conceptual design details 5.) a slide file and 6.) a list of resources and references. Please note that the applicant shall keep the originals to all work. • Problem-Solving Process: It should be reiterated that the overall problem solving process to be employed in this study is to 1.) begin at the regional level and incrementally move to smaller scales 2.) always supporting planning and design decisions at any scale with stated goals and objectives and that J.) the context of any decision is understood in relationship to all other scales of study. In this manner all goals and objectives, criteria, gui' delines and the conceptual plans and designs will be logically and rationally defensible and respond to user needs. • RESPONSIBILITIES: APPLICANT: The applicant agrees to the following conditions: • 1.) To provide a final document that meets at least minimum academic standards as established by the Landscape Archtecture Program, College of Environmental Design, Univ ersity of Colorado at Denver 2.) To perform the work, and only the work, as outlined in this proposal , J.) To work in cooperation with the Eastern Rio Blanco County Parks and Recreation Commission and to coordinate and communicate where necessary • 4.) To attend all scheduled meetings involving the applicant , 5.) To keep accurate financial records of all project costs 6.) To meet all scheduled deadlines 10

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. . • CLIENT: The primary client in this project is the Eastern Rio Blanco County Par.ks and Recreation Commission. The client agrees to the following conditions: 1.) To provide coordination with town and county agencies and officials where necessary 2.) To provide obtainable information where necessary and possible J.) To attend all scheduled meetings with the applicant 4.) To provide communication and coordination with the applicant where necessary 5.) To review and comment on all completed work FINAL DOCUMENT: The final document shall be an B!"X 11" report bound in a 3-ring binder format. The document shall be indexed and include narrative, photographs, graphs, charts, sketches andreductions of all full-size work. The document shall be reproducible by any standard printing or photoc9pying technology. All graphic standards shall conform to guidelines established by the instructor. All materials and methods used in preparing the document shall be of high quality. In addition, 1 set of colored full-size drawings shall also be prepared and photographed for presentation purposes. The applicant agrees to make an audio-visual presentation of this project upon its completion. Copies of the final document shall be provided to the university and all direct participants. It is the intention that the final document retain a flexible format that may be changed or expanded as needed. • RESOURCES: • Individuals: Several individuals, including academic and professional people are direct or indirect project participants and have agreed to_.assist in an advisory capacity. Agencies and Organizations: Those agencies and organizations most actively involved as a resource are 1.) Eastern Rio Blanco County Parks and Recreation Commission 2.) Town of Meeker J.) Rio Blanco County Planning Department 4.) Bureau of Land ManagementWhite River Resource Area 5.) Division of Impact ance, State of Colorado aQd 6.) the College of Environmental Design, University of Colorado at Denver with the Center for Community Development and Design. Maps: The following map coverage has been confirmed: 1.) Standard 7.5 minute series USGS topographic maps 2.) FICA floodplain maps J.) Dated aerial photo coverage 4.) County land use and hazards maps, 1:50,000. 1:24,000 11

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5.) BLM land ownership 1:24,000 6 . ) Municipal map of Meeker Reports/Documents: Several planning reports and documents and background data relevant to this project are available fr:om the Town of Meeker and the Rio Blanco County Planning Department. Additti!>naT . reports are available from the Center for Community Development and Design, Auraria Higher Educational Center and the Department of Local Affairs. In addition, several related studies are available from the HUD libraries. A preliminary draft of a recreation study for eastern Rio Blanco County is also pending. Needed Resources: The resources most needed for this project are 1.) community support 2.) an understanding of recreation and social.need J.) an understanding of environmental constt.aints and opportunities. Community support exists for this project and there is sufficient existing information on recreation and social need. There is some existing information on environmental constraints and opportunities and the applicant shall generate needed additional information. Materials and Equipment: The applicant has all necessary drafting and photography equipment for this project. The funding source shall cover the cost of all paper, mylar, film and nonreusable materials. Support Services: The Center for Community Development and Design shall provide all necessary typing services and shall work with the Division of Impact Assistance in handling financial arrangements. Information Storage and Retrieval: 1.) Project notebook-all research material, correspondence, notes etc. shall be kept in an indexed project notebook 2.) . .All full-size drawfungs shall be kept in a flat :.:file J.) All slides shall be kept in a protective file or protective plastic covers EVALUATION: Process: The evaluation process begins with on-going project review by all project participants involved. As the project is partially educational and involves the introduction of concepts and planning processes, this on-going review serves as an evaluation tool. Post-project evaluation will make it possible to see if all stated project goals and objectives have been dealt with. 12

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Evaluation Criteria: * Have the stated goals and objectives been met? * Is there general understanding and support for the process and findings of this study by the participants? * Does this document provide the baseline information, conceptual understanding and framework for further action? * Will this document aid in on-going planning, securing additional funding sources and in possibly creating a special recreation district? PROJECT TIME SCHEDULE: Phase ComJ2letion Date 1. Background Research and Planning Context Feb. 1 , 1981 2. Regional Open Space Planning Mar. 1 , 1981 J. Town Parks and Open Space Planning Apr. 1 , 1981 4. Conceptual Park Designs May 1 , 1981 Preliminary Project Presentation May 1 , 1981 Final Project Presentation May 15, 1981 PROJECT FUNDING AND BUDGETING Funding for this project is being provided by the Division of Impact Assistance, Department of Local Affairs, State of Colo rado and the Center for Community Development and Design, Col lege of Environmental Design, University of Colorado at Denver, for the reimbursement of all direct expenses. . --. . Antici12ated Needs: Travel: 8 trips to Meeker @ 520 miles per trip @> .20 per mile ................................. $ 8J2.00 Meals: 35 meals@ 4.00 per meal •.•..•..•............•. 140.00 Long Distance Phone Calls.............................. 75.00 Film and Processing.... . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . • • . . . . . • . . • • . 100.00 Base Map Photography. • . . . . • . • . . . . • • . . • • . • . • . • . . . . . . • . . . 400.00 Equipment and Materials •.•.........••..•.....•••..•.... 150.00 Photographic Reduction and Half-Toning •••..••...•.••.•. 200.00

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Reproduction of Final Document 50 copies offset, 100 pages including paper costs etc ••.•...•••.••...•••••. ,. Binders and covers .• . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . TOTAL PROJECT COST .•••••••.•••.•••••••.••. . ..... 800.00 150.00 . ...... . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .$284?.00

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.. ••• WYOMING COLORADO MOFFAT COUNTY RIO BLANCO COUNTY GARFIELD COUNTY 1-70 LOCATION MAP EAGLE COUNTY

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I• I I I l • I I COLORADO • \ . : V:-_,_-<-: . . ... , : . . : Regional Roadway Network R a ilroad A i r Mi. o 5 10 20 za-p.,_ Km:OS10 j -40 • 00 Existing Roadway Network, Rail, and Air Systems

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I I I' • I ,, C-oLORADO m.sT'u Legend Mi. Km. Area underlain by Oil Shale yielding 25 or more gallons of oil per ton Strippable Coal-less than 150 feet of overburden Other Coal Deposits of less than 3000 feet of overburden Uranium District . . .. . . . . .-• General Location of Coal, Oil Shale, and Uranium ..... ,.... .. •• ..c .. , •• ...

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, . I (" " "' . , Major Energy Development I• I • I ., COLORADO Lltgend Mi. Km. Coal Mines Oil Shale facilities Uranium Plants & Mills Coal Fired Power Plants • TD4= ... _ .. _

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303-388-5351 PHILLIP E. FLORES ASSOCIATES, INC. maN.MADISONST. DENVER COLORADOso20e October 31, 1980 Mr. Gail Gunter Professor, School of Environmental Design University of Colorado at Denver 1100 14th Street Denver, Colorado 80202 Dear Gail: This letter is to advise you that I have agreed to act as a 11Professional Advisor .. for Steve Walker, for the duration of his thesis project. The project, presently titled 11Master Plan for Parks, Greenbelts, and Drainageways, Meeker, Colorado11, has been described to me by Steve and does have my endorsement as an adequate challenge and worthwhile project for the Community of Meeker. I am looking forward to working with Steve on this project and providing guidance as may be requested or required. I would also welcome your input as to Hmitations which might be appropriate in my role as advisor. Sincerely, Willi am W. WWB/bp LANDSCAPE ARCHITECTURE LAND DESIGN ENVIRONMENTAL PLANNING

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Eastern Rio Blanco County Parks and Recreation Commission Mr. John Schier Dept. of Local Affairs 940 Main St. Grand Junction, CO 81501 Dear John: November 7, 1980 I'am writing to reiterate our request for assistance in completion of a Master Plan for the proposed Eastern Rio Blanco Metropolitan Parks and Recreation District. As you know, we've had capable help by Vince Hooper, our temporary planner, with regard to the "nuts and bolts" of the plan. However, we now have need for someone with design skills to refine and graphically illustrate the Master Plan. You have mentioned the possibility of providing an intern from Colorado University. If this is the case, an intern would be perfect for our needs. We would be more than interested to persue this further with you. RM:sjw Siy;ly, Myers Chairman

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Eastern Rio Blanco County Parks and Recreation Commission Mr. Steven P. Walker ' 510 Columbine Deriver, CO 80206 Dear Steve: P.O. Box 599 Meeker, CO 81641 This is to confirm our agreement made December 12, 1980, with regard to your study proposal summary. The Commission feels fortunate to receive your timely services, so as to enhance and round out the proposed Parks and Recreation Master Plan. It is our hope that this study benefits us all. Sin{[!; Robert E .. Myers Chairman

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RESUME STEVEN PATRICK WALKER Personal Information: Age: 30 Residency: Boulder-Denver area, 12 years Marital status: single Health: excellent Mailing address: 510 Columbine Denver, Colorado, 80206 Phone: (303) 399-5129 Educational Background: M.L.A. Landscape Architecture University of Colorado, Denver expected date of.graduation-May 1981 B.A. Environmental Biology University of Colorado, Boulder 1972 Ridgefield High School Ridgefield, Connecticut 1968 Honors: May 1980 President, UCD Chapter American Society of Landscape Architects April 1980April 1981 Vice-President, UCD Chapter American Society of Landscape Architects April 1979-April 1980 Senior Pacesetter Award University of Colorado, 1972 Societies: UCD Student Chapter Member American Society of Landscape Architects National Student Affiliate Member American Society of Landscape Architects Scholarships: 1979-1980 Traveling Scholarship Colorado Chapter American Society of Landscape Architects March 1980 Grants: The Roaring Fork-Frying Pan Study: Land Use Planning and the Community Development Process, funded by the Kellogg Foundation, June 1979-August 1979

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Residential Development in the Mountains of Colorado: A Survey of Issues, funded by the Rockefeller Foundation, Project Director, June 1972-December 1972 Economic and Environmental Impact of the 1976 Winter Olympic Games: Alpine Events ( Colorado ), funded by the Rockefeller Foundation, June 1971-August 1971 1 * all 3 investigations were performed by 6-man interdisciplinary teams Other Assignments: Team member, Bandelier National Monument Study, cooperative design studio between the UCD Landscape Architecture Program and the Denver Service Center, National Park Service January 1980May 1980 ' Researcher, writer, editor, Boulder County Planning Project, College of Environmental Design, University of Colorado, Boulder, ' 1975 Project Airquarius, Environmental Center, University of Colorado, Boulder, 1971-1972: funded group involved with air pollution and transportation research, steam and electricar development, Project Co-Director; Winter Olympics Transportation Management Project, Airquarius representative to the 1972 Winter Olympic Games in Sapporo, Japan Employment Experience: The Roaring Fork-Frying Pan Study, funded by the Kellogg Foundation, June 1979-August 1979 , Assistant Planner, Karle Seydel and Associates, Land Use Planning Consultants, Boulder, Colorado, June 1976-August 1977 Assistant Planner, Synersign Inc., Planning Consultants, " Boulder, Colorado, June 1975-August 1975 The Residential Development Study, funded by the Rockefeller / Foundation, June 1972-December 1972 The Winter Olympics Study, funded by the Rockefeller Foundation, June1971-August 1971 Publications: Assessment of Alternatives for Development Concept Plans, Bandelier National Monument, New Mexico, with others, UCDDSC National Park Service The Roaring Fork-Frying Pan Study: Land Use Planning and the Community Development Process, with others, funded by the Kellogg Foundation, August 1979

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Natural Resource Areas, Nederland, Colorado, with others, Karle Seydel and Associates, prepared for and funded by the Town of Nederland, Colorado, and the State of Colorado Land Use Program, 1978 Geologic Hazards and Constraints, Nederland, Colorado, with others, Karle Seydel and Associates, prepared for and funded by Town of Nederland, Colorado, and the State of Colorado Land Use Program, 1978 Regional Resource Inventory, Nederland, Colorado, with others, ' prepared for and funded by the Town of Nederland, Colorado, and the Department of Housing and Urban Development, 1975 Residential Development in the Mountains of Colorado: A Survey of Issues, with others, published by the United Banks of Colorado, Inc., 1973, several segments of this report were reprinted in issues of Ecology Today Economic And Environmental Impact of the 1976 Winter Olympics: Alpine Events, with others, University of Colorado Press, 1971 Travel: I have traveled in Canada, Japan, England, Germany, France, Italy, and Turkey, as well as throughout the United States Description of Duties: I have been involved in many aspects of planning and landscape architectural design at regional, town, and site specific scales. I have experience in environmental research and analysis and in the preparation of background planning documents and maps. I have been involved in planning issues including the analysis of community services and facilities, housing, sewage treatment, , questionnaires and citizen participation. More recently I have ' developed experience in several aspects of site planning and , design. I have experience in both private office and government situations. Skills: * General information-gathering techniques * Writing, editing, proof-reading * Graphics and the preparation of presentational materials * Design presentation * Photography * Planning and site design skills * Public and citizen participation techniques Career Objectives: I have strong interests in physical site design as well as environmental resource planning and management as related to site specific, community and regional planning and design. I am especially interested in the mitigation of environmental problems as related to sensitive physical site design and land use planning. At this time I wish to further my experience in a private office situation.

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I would also like to teach landscape architectural lesign in concurrence with private practice. )everal references are available upon request.