Printed in the Redstone Review April 15
Two new projects funded by the Lyons Community Foundation’s Rebuild Fund contribute to the hard work of repair and rebuilding for residents as well as returning beauty and accessibility to our public spaces. These two grants focus on the flood recovery work being done in the Larimer County portion of the greater Lyons community served by LCF, as well as right here in downtown Lyons.
The first award is a $10,000 grant to support the Larimer County Long Term Recovery Group (LTRG) in the unincorporated Larimer County portion of the Lyons district. This organization’s work serves areas such as Big Elk Meadows, Pinewood Springs and Blue Mountain. The grant will go to support a construction manager that will oversee a variety of projects including major debris removal, home reconstruction and repair, and other flood-related clean up and rebuilding work. The construction manager will provide the professional experience and expertise necessary to complete projects and also coordinate large teams of skilled and unskilled volunteer labor. Funds will also be used for fuel, construction materials, and equipment maintenance.
In 2014, the Larimer LTRG completed 36 projects in the unincorporated areas of Lyons. There are an estimated 50+ work requests currently in the pipeline, with more expected as spring approaches. Many of these homes and public and private access areas were extremely hard hit by the flood. In 2014, the Larimer LTRG coordinated 3100 volunteers for over 84,000 hours spent on this recovery work. Larimer LTRG Recovery Manager (and Pinewood Springs resident) Laura Levy says, “We are grateful to LCF for once again being able to respond quickly and efficiently to the needs of people in the greater Lyons Area. Although there are a variety of flood recovery resources available, there remains a significant gap in the ability of public funds to address some of these repair needs of our residents. Not only does this work impact flood survivor’s ability to recover, but other projects such as the work being done by the River Restoration Coalition affects what is happening downstream. The addition of paid support allows us to effectively utilize the thousands of volunteer hours we are fortunate to have contribute to our efforts”. Residents in unincorporated Lyons who need assistance with flood recovery are encouraged to call 970-461-2222 or visit larimerLTRG.org.
The other recent Rebuild Award is a $5000 grant to complete the last phases of the new Town Hall Plaza. This project provides the finishing touches to the work that was recently installed in the area around Town Hall that was so devastated during the flood. The majority of the construction of the project was made possible by a grant from Honeywell and Rotary Clubs International, and the contributions of Lyons’ own Blue Mountain Stone. The new plaza features a space for outdoor lunches and meetings, a space for art and cultural events as well as an improved entrance to Town Hall. The LCF grant will specifically support the installation of native plants that support Boulder County species of birds, butterflies, moths, caterpillars, native bees and other wildlife. Funds will go directly to the purchase of plants, soil and the installation of an irrigation system. The garden will be created under the direction of local residents and volunteers Mimi and Larry Ellmore, whose company wildbydesignhabitats.com specializes in this type of native habitat design. The goal is to have this garden and courtyard as a destination educational garden and place to enjoy spending time in nature. It will be a teaching garden and provide an opportunity for the residents of Lyons and visitors to learn how easy it is to create a viable wildlife habitat in their own yards.
The Town Hall Plaza project is a truly collaborative effort of many area businesses and volunteers. CU Denver students created the design plans and Blue Mountain Stone designed and built the stone work. The Lyons Garden Club planted bulbs in the planter boxes that have been established along the building and will provide the labor and expertise for planting the garden. Lyons Arts and Humanities will seek funding and artists to design a railing to separate the parking lot on Railroad Ave. The Lyons Town Hall Plaza will be a teaching and learning center for all ages and will be enjoyed by all who visit Lyons.