City wants ideas for Orchard Mesa development plan


Orchard Mesa meetings

■ 4 to 6:30 p.m. Today at the Mesa County Fairgrounds building, 2785 U.S. Highway 50

■ 4 to 6:30 p.m. Thursday at Orchard Mesa Baptist Church Fellowship Hall, 2748 B 1/2 Road

■ 4 to 6:30 p.m. June 18, Covenant Presbyterian Church, 237 32 Road

What would make your life better on Orchard Mesa?

More sidewalks, street lighting and trails? A hotel for out-of-town visitors and fairgrounds participants? How about a more functional U.S. Highway 50 and better ways to get across the busy roadway?

Everything and anything are on the table as the city of Grand Junction works to develop a 25-year plan for the Orchard Mesa area. Residents are encouraged to attend any of three meetings in the coming week and a half to put in their two cents worth. The first meeting is this evening at the fairgrounds.

“It is a big project,” said Dave Thornton, a planner with the city of Grand Junction. “We’re trying to talk with the business community and residents. There are more than 15,000 residents in the boundary area. That’s as big as Fruita, but when you look at the services, it’s pretty limited.”

All of Orchard Mesa, like the rest of Grand Junction, is covered under the comprehensive plan — a road map for future city planning ideas. But in addition to that over-arching plan, the city wants to help formulate a vision specifically for Orchard Mesa.

From a planner’s point of view, the specific region is divided into three areas: the central area east of 31 Road, which is agricultural and rural; the western portion, which is mostly urban residential; and the bluffs, the area roughly south of U.S. Highway 50.

Already, Mesa County has some improvements planned for the fairgrounds. There also are some plans for a combined Colorado Mesa University and government public safety training facility near the drag strip east of Whitewater Hill.

“To me, that’s exciting,” Thornton said. “How does that affect Orchard Mesa over the next 25 years?”

For more information about the plan and to make comments, call 244-1636.


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