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Ballfield, skateboard park proposed for Edwards

Kathy Heicher/Enterprise reporter

Following through on promises to provide more recreation facilities throughout the valley, the Western Eagle County Metro Recreation District, or WECMRD, is proposing one more multi-purpose field at Berry Creek in Edwards.

There’s also some talk of developing a skate park in the Edwards area.

At a recent work session with Eagle County commissioners, WECMRD Recreation Director Steve Russell said the additional field is needed to answer recreation demands in the mid-valley. The multi-purpose field would be big enough to serve as a combination youth baseball and girls’ softball field, with space for a couple of infields.

The recreation district has already contributed $500,000 to the construction of three fields at the county-owned Edwards property and all being used heavily. When the recreation district asked voters for a tax increase last year, WECMRD leaders pledged to spend about $1 million each on facilities in Edwards, Eagle and Gypsum.

“The (Edwards) fields are very busy, especially the artificial turf field,” said Russell, noting that the additional fields are sorely needed for kids’ teams. WECMRD is also proposing to add 80 parking spaces at Berry Creek.

Russell said the district hopes to start work this month.

At the work session, Russell said WECMRD also wants to move fairly quickly toward development of a skate park in the Edwards area. Possible locations include the Homestead subdivision and Berry Creek.

County Commissioner Chairman Michael Gallagher said if a skate park is built at the Berry Creek site, it must be “world class.” The county is still in the planning process for facilities at that site.

Gallagher said the county wants a facility attractive enough to draw users from outside of the county.

Russell said WECMRD’s goal is to serve residents of the district. He spoke of a concrete skateboard facility, something in the $300,000-$400,000 range, likely accomplished by partnering with other entities such as the county and the Edwards Metro District.

“If the goal is to attract tourists, we’d say that’s the county’s deal, but maybe we can help,” said Russell.

Commissioner Arn Menconi said the valley is 10 years behind in delivering on a “real skateboard park”, and voiced support for developing the facility at Berry Creek.

“The dollars dictate what we’re capable of doing,” said Menconi. “We’re not trying to build an initial Olympic skateboard park. We’re looking for something that can be used by the majority of people in the region.”

This story first appeared in the Eagle Valley Enterprise.


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