As the City of Grand Junction enters the early part of 2022, we are taking a moment to reflect on our experience in 2021. While the past year has come with many challenges, they have not hindered the ability to continue to meet the needs of the community and prioritize projects that will propel the City into the future. The community can be proud of the hard work of City employees and its community partners in 2021. Highlights of what the City accomplished in 2021 include:
Responding to the Community – With the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic still being felt throughout the community, the City responded by making appropriate budget investments in both capital projects, City employees, and community partners which were geared toward supporting the city’s economic recovery. Additionally, City Council began the development of a new Strategic Plan which will guide the high-level priorities for the City over a two-year period. The plan incorporates the key priorities of housing, mobility, economic development, quality of life, and public safety. The City also completed a Housing Needs Assessment Study to evaluate the increasing housing affordability and availability challenges in the community. This document will serve as the first step toward developing housing solutions to ensure quality, affordable housing is available to everyone. The City also pursued the purchasing of a new building to provide childcare services to employees. This project will help relieve the lack of childcare access in the city by creating 40 new childcare spots. Voters approved the passage of 2A and 2B which lifted the moratorium on retail cannabis sales. This prompted City Council and staff to begin a series of public engagement sessions to incorporate community concerns and suggestions into the regulation development process, ensuring cannabis sales preserve community character and protect health and safety.
Public Safety Improvements – In 2021, the City began work on several public safety projects that included the completion of Fire Station 6, initiating the land purchase and construction of Fire Station 8, and the construction of a replacement Fire Station 3. In addition to these new stations, Fire also worked to address increases in call demand for EMS services by implementing the comprehensive EMS plan to include the conversion of non-emergent day car into an ambulance to assist with call loads.
Infrastructure Investments – Our Wastewater team completed an expansion of the BioCNG storage and automation project which will now capture nearly all compressed natural gas (CNG) generated at the wastewater facility. This CNG is used as a fuel source for City fleet and Grand Valley Transit buses and reduces the City’s output of carbon emissions. The Public Works Department completed several projects to improve city streets and sidewalks. This included a planned chip seal program that covered 78 lane miles and a curb, gutter, and sidewalk safety repair project completed at 53 different locations to improve surfaces for non-motorized users.
Improving Quality of Life – The City was able to initiate or complete a host of projects that improve recreational activities in the community and protect our natural environment. A few highlights include the opening of the 37-acre Kindred Reserve open space park, the opening of a Golf Performance Center at Lincoln Park, and significant improvements to Canyon View Park, including sports lighting which resulted in the park being named the first International Dark Sky accredited facility in Colorado. Construction also began on significant improvements to the Lincoln Park Stadium which is being completed in cooperation with other community partners. Finally, to proactively protect our urban tree canopy, Parks & Recreation developed a rapid response plan designed to identify and protect our numerous ash trees from pest damage, preserving a vital natural asset in our community.
Contact: Greg LeBlanc, Sr. Assistant to the City Manager | 970-244 1557 or email@example.com