Gunnison considers assisting with playground at high school
GUNNISON—The Gunnison City Council discussed helping install a kid’s playground at the high school ball fields during a meeting on Wednesday, Sept. 21.
Gunnison City Mayor Bruce Blackham said someone had contacted him recently wanting to donate money towards a local project, and Blackham said he thought that the proposed playground would be a good choice.
“We see this as a good place for the younger kids to play during the games and tournaments going on with our teams,” said Councilman Trevor Powell, who is also the high school principal. “It wouldn’t be huge, obviously, but it would be big enough to give them someplace to play within eyeshot of parents.
“Once we decide on the kind of playground we want, we just have to get approved through the school district for risk management. So we are looking around at what we like out there and what other places have done and then (getting) the plans together for risk management.”
Powell explained the playground would be located in a central location in the high school complex, which itself is getting an overhaul.
“We’ve just barely started out there, and it’s nice to see that stuff is getting done, mostly demolition now,” Powell said. “We are getting the two new fields and backstops in place so we start work from the center and work our way out.”
While still in preliminary stages, Powell explained to the mayor and council members some of the early considerations in making the playground a reality, such as total size of the playground and type of ground covering.
“Wood chips are the cheapest ground covering, but rubber chips are the best as far as risk management goes,” Powell said.
Gunnison City employee Matt Reber told the council he had looked into the cost of the rubber chips and they were about $300 per ton.
“If the council will approve it, maybe we can also help haul off some of the old concrete, too,” Reber said.
Powell said the total size of the playground was yet to be determined, but suggested that 40-feet by 40-feet might be a realistic figure.
Blackham told Powell that the city could almost certainly help make the project happen, especially in conjunction with the potential donor.
“If we come to some kind of consensus, and I get this potential donor to participate, maybe we can get things going and frame it up with curbing and get the rubber chips down,” the mayor said.
The council decided to table the discussion while Powell determined the exact placement and size of the proposed playground. Once those variable were determined, the council plans to readdress its commitment to assisting with the playground.
Councilman Blake Donaldson told Powell, “I commend you for this Trevor. This is a nice project you have going here.”
Powell said, “We can always add on to it in the future too, like maybe a few picnic tables so parents can eat and watch their kids play.”