Comments from a Crawford resident about problems caused by his neighbor plowing an alleyway prompted public works director Bruce Bair to bring the issue up before council at the Feb. 3 meeting.
The citizen expressed concern about drainage after the neighbor filled in a drainage system he'd created at the end of the alley.
Bair said the town has a policy of not plowing alleyways. Considering that the drainage system was created in the town right of way, he asked trustees if they have a position on allowing citizens to plow the alleys.
The town has a 15-foot right of way in all alleys, said Bair. He said that if the town plows them, the snow is pushed against garages and into yards, prompting complaints. He has granted requests in the past to plow alleyways, but doesn't want to make a habit of it.
Mayor pro tem Mike Tiedeman said he doesn't see any problem with allowing property owners to move snow in the alleyway to access their property, as long as they don't do any damage.
"I don't either," said trustee Hetty Todd.
Bair added that the citizen who did the plowing has helped with clearing sidewalks around town for years. "He's been a good citizen for helping the town out," said Bair, who doesn't want to discourage him.
Bair said he plans to dig a culvert in the subject alley to help with drainage, and trustees suggested the two neighbors try to work things out.
The heavy snowfall is causing problems for the town, too. The upper Town Hall parking lot gravel is sinking into the mud. With warmer weather forecast for this week, it'll only get worse, said Tiedeman.
Trustee Gill Saunders worried that the resulting mud will get tracked into the newly-finished hardwood floors on the top floor's community spaces. He suggested the town look into adding more gravel to the lot to protect the investment in the floors. The lot was graveled last summer.
After being turned down last year for a Great Outdoors Colorado (GOCO) planning grant, trustees voted to pursue reworking and resubmitting the application this fall. The $22,300 grant would have allowed the town to study the feasibility of upgrading the sidewalks, mainly along Highway 92. The application didn't make the cut. With GOCO changing its grant cycle from a biannual to an annual basis, the next time they can apply is in the fall, said Bair.
Bair said that the original application needs updating, including gathering new construction bids due to rising costs of materials, but that the basis of the grant still applies. Bair suggested that GOCO is looking for more creativity in its applications and asked trustees to brainstorm. He suggested traffic-calming components and maybe a "walk of fame" showcasing names of the town's pioneers. He also asked that ideas not require a great deal of maintenance, like planters.
Tiedeman suggested having all the local brands carved into the surface.
The next grant cycle opens Aug. 3, with applications due Nov. 5.