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County commits funds to Town-to-Lakes trail

Staff Writer

Years after pledging support for the project, the Archuleta County Board of County Commissioners voted Tuesday afternoon to enter into an engineering services agreement with Davis Engineering to complete the first phase of the Town-to-Lakes Trail.

The project is a joint project between Archuleta County and the Town of Pagosa Springs, with the town serving as project manager.

Construction on the phase, which will stretch from Pinon Causeway to Aspen Village, is expected to occur in 2014.

“It will be good to start in earnest,” commissioner Michael Whiting said in approving the agreement, adding that it would, “prove it’s real.”

The eventual goal of the project is to connect existing, and improved, trail systems in downtown Pagosa Springs and Pagosa Lakes.

In May 2010, the BoCC pledged support for the Town-to-Lakes Trail project, also applying for grant funding from the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT).

That grant, totaling $91,000 for costs associated with the design of phase one, came from CDOT Region 5 Enhancement funding. But despite the allocation of the funding from CDOT, the money was not available for the project until an intergovernmental agreement (IGA) was put in place in May 2013.

In June, the town and county negotiated an engineering services agreement with local firm Davis Engineering for the design and construction management for the phase.

Design and construction management for the project was not put out to bid because Davis Engineering is on the county’s approved on-call engineering list for 2013.

That agreement then had to be approved by CDOT, with CDOT’s notice of approval coming on Aug. 21.

The CDOT grant will cover 80 percent of the phase’s cost, up to $91,000.

The total of the agreement with Davis Engineering is $111,418.19, with CDOT’s portion being $89,134.55.

Archuleta County will pay the remaining 20 percent, ringing in at $22,283.64.

The county’s portion of the funding comes from $225,000 the BoCC previously set aside for the project via resolution. That funding comes from 1A Parks and Recreation funding.

The $22,000 is the county’s first expense toward the trail system from that pot of money, leaving more than $200,000 for future construction costs.

In approving the engineering agreement, commissioner Steve Wadley, too, spoke of the importance of the project, while commissioner Clifford Lucero thanked county contracts and procurement officer Larry Walton for his work on the agreement.

randi@pagosasun.com

This story was posted on September 5, 2013.