Plenty of community feedback

Packed open house discusses median beautification project

FOUR conceptual drawings provide a look at possible designs for the South Broadway medians. Enlargephoto

FOUR conceptual drawings provide a look at possible designs for the South Broadway medians.

Approximately 70 people turned out for Thursday night's open house at the Cortez Recreation Center to give their thoughts on the Cortez median beautification project.

The open house, in which the Heart and Soul group conducted, allowed residents to help plan the design of the South Broadway medians, and improvements for downtown and the entryways of highways 491, 145 and 160 and Seventh Street.

Planning and Building Director Kirsten Sackett said Thursday's open house was the first for the median beautification project. While no future dates have been set, Sackett said the hope is to have an open house meeting in Towaoc sometime later in March and another larger workshop in Cortez toward the end of the month.

The design shown to the public on Thursday was completely conceptual because the city wants an entirely cohesive approach to begin the process.

The design team and the construction company attended the open house to answer questions and to explain the parameters as well as any anticipated difficulties.

There were also interactive workshops with stations to allow the public to get more information while letting them give feedback.

"We want to create a real nice conceptual plan," Sackett said. "The goal is to do the (landscaping portion) before the end of the year."

She said the primary goal for Thursday's open house was to gather information that will help the design team formulate the plan.

"We don't know exactly what will go in (the medians)," she said.

The city has budgeted about $600,000 this year for the project and will continue to add on the project in subsequent years if the funds are available.

"This was the first outreach effort to get the public comments on what they would like to see," she said.

Sackett said construction will be underway this summer and should not disrupt traffic flow.

The remaining construction work on South Broadway is expected to be completed before summer.

The results with the comments from Thursday's workshop will be posted online at cortezheartandsoul.com.

michaelm@cortezjournal.com

Nina Williams with Cortez Heart and Soul discusses options for a gateway sign to Cortez at the Community Design meeting Thursday. Enlargephoto

Sam Green/Cortez Journal

Nina Williams with Cortez Heart and Soul discusses options for a gateway sign to Cortez at the Community Design meeting Thursday.

Sam Green/Cortez  JournalAnn Christensen and Craig Stoffel discuss design options for the median on south Broadway with a packed room of residents at the Community Design workshop Thursday. Enlargephoto

Sam Green/Cortez JournalAnn Christensen and Craig Stoffel discuss design options for the median on south Broadway with a packed room of residents at the Community Design workshop Thursday.