Longmont’s Resilient St. Vrain project: Riverside recreation & bike skills course

Cyclists gather for a group shot for Channel 8 during a bike tour of the flood-damaged area along the St. Vrain Greenway on Friday. (Lewis Geyer / Staff Photographer)
Cyclists gather for a group shot during a bike tour of the flood-damaged area along the St. Vrain Greenway (Lewis Geyer / Staff Photographer)

From the Daily Times-Call

Longmont city staff showed off portions of the St. Vrain Greenway on the Mayor’s Bike & Learn tour, asking Longmont residents clad in helmets and perched on bikes to imagine the improvements to come in the next two years.

Between 50 and 60 people came out for the tour — many of whom were Longmont employees looking to earn credits in the City of Longmont University and the city’s internal wellness program. Councilwoman Joan Peck was the only member of the City Council to take the bike tour.

Wolfrum started off the tour by talking about the mission of Resilient St. Vrain, a project expected to cost between $120 million and $140 million.

Resilient St. Vrain aims to allow nature to restore itself along the river, widening the river channel, shrinking the floodplain and allowing for opportunities for residents to enjoy the waterway.

“My wife and I moved here in 1985 and the only time you saw the St. Vrain Creek then was if you went over the Main Street Bridge — you could catch a real quick glimpse,” Wolfrum said.

Resilient St. Vrain aims to create opportunities for recreation and transportation alongside the river.

Wolfrum said Main Street Bridge will open by the end of month, and then crews will start work on the greenway underneath Main Street Bridge. Longmont will also be replacing the South Pratt Parkway Bridge with a bridge designed to withstand a 100-year flood with sidewalks.

The group stopped again on the greenway northwest of the Martin Street roundabout to talk about Dickens Farm Park. Dickens Farm Park will be a 52-acre park that encourages residents to interact with the river, Project Manager Steve Ransweiler said.

“The idea is to embrace the river … and have places where people can drop down in tubes or boats. It won’t be like Lyons because we don’t have that kind of grading — not a whitewater park, a river park,” Ransweiler said. “We’re excited to create a place where people can get into the water.”

Ransweiler added that the park would also have a bike skills course and a small island created by the 2013 flood will become a nature discovery area.

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