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Pocket Park Concept is Displayed

Pocket Park Concept as Viewed from the Stage

Pocket Park Concept as Viewed from the Stage

If all goes well, the proposed Pocket Park for downtown Lamar could be ready by the annual Parade of Lights in early December. That was the hope expressed by Rick Akers from Lamar’s Parks and Recreation Department during a July 14th public meeting outlining how the park would look.

View from Overhead Facing West

View from Overhead Facing West

Chris Geddes, an associate of the design firm, Design Workshop out of Denver, presented a slide show of the park concept and an explanation of the choice of materials. If the name Geddes is familiar to Lamar residents, Chris is the son of John and Gail Geddes who owned Geddes Drug, two doors down from the Pocket Park location for numerous years.  He praised the efforts of the city and the Shore Arts Center to accomplish the project, stating, “The partnership you’ve created to make this happen is really encouraging.  There’s a lot of great work going on in Lamar right now.  I know people are anxious to see that work turn into something real and hopefully we can get some of that to come to pass with this project.” He said the park will speak to the culture of Lamar and will be something that the community desperately needs.  “This project will really reinforce all the efforts that are underway for community development,” he added.

Chris Geddes Outlines Concept

Chris Geddes Outlines Concept

Akers said the idea for converting the limited-use parking area between Daylight Donuts and the Shore Arts Center started about two years ago and provided a means to offer downtown shoppers a chance to sit and visit. The idea of developing the space into a gathering place for specific events such as mini-music concerts was a logical follow-up. Geddes said the initial plans were developed from local concepts and incorporated into drawings by students from the University of Colorado.

The park will offer a lot of color, from wall paintings, to perennial plants, to differently textured and colored clay tabors which will allow for water run-off and will be a hindrance to skateboarders. Shade will be provided throughout the day along with built-in seats, both along the wall and with a curved seat wall that will be placed in the middle of the area.  LED lights will illuminate portions of the park and will help to control expenses.  Akers said the Pocket Park will operate under the same curfews as the other parks in town, open at 4:30am and closing at 10:30pm and the east and west entrances will be gated.

Regarding the timeline on the $150,000 project, he explained, “We intend to go to bid in about two to three weeks and our goal then is to get it to council by September for approval and then let the contract out. Best case scenario at this point would be to have this done by the Parade of Lights, but that’s up to the contractor we select and how quickly they can get going.”  He said that although the project is being funded through DOLA, Healthy Places and the City of Lamar, local service organizations are welcomed to make any donation they’d like.

By Russ Baldwin

Filed Under: City of LamarConsumer IssuesEntertainmentFeatured

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