City of Montrose, DMEA Close on Riverfront Property
by Kati O'Hare
Apr 26, 2012 | 1494 views | 0 0 comments | 7 7 recommendations | email to a friend | print
<b>ON THE RIVERFRONT</b> – Montrose resident Kenny Robinson fishes along a section of the Uncompahgre
River that recently became public. The one-acre parcel is part of a 35-acre piece that was acquired by the
City of Montrose and Delta Montrose Electric Association on Friday, April 20. (Photo by Joel Blocker)
ON THE RIVERFRONT – Montrose resident Kenny Robinson fishes along a section of the Uncompahgre River that recently became public. The one-acre parcel is part of a 35-acre piece that was acquired by the City of Montrose and Delta Montrose Electric Association on Friday, April 20. (Photo by Joel Blocker)
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MONTROSE – A one-mile stretch of property along the Uncompahgre River officially became public on April 20, when Delta-Montrose Electric Association and the City of Montrose closed on a 35-acre parcel that runs behind the River Landing shopping center to the north and include a mile of riverfront property.

It was collaboration at its best, with a wide variety of community partners coming together to move the river project forward, according the Montrose Community Foundation.

The City of Montrose and DMEA officially own the property, but local residents Jim and Sharen Branscome donated $100,000 towards its purchase; the Montrose Community Foundation is the project's tax-deductible entity.

"We think this one-mile stretch of the Uncompahgre River is one of the most beautiful sections and know that this parcel is critical to the Riverway Project," Jim Branscome said.

The property was purchased from Jerry and JoAnn Trudell.

"This is a class example of a lot of people coming together at the right time to make this all work — providing recreation for the community," Jerry Trudell said.

Acquiring riverfront property within the city is one of the goals outlined in the Uncompahgre Riverway Master Plan.

Those goals fit well with DMEA's recent promise to provide more fishing access to area residents to offset the loss of fishing on the South Canal due to DMEA's hydropower project.

DMEA pledged $300,000 toward that effort, and that pledge was used to purchase the property, along with another $30,000 from the city.

Both DMEA and the city will now focus efforts on making that section of river more accessible to the public through trails and other riverway enhancement projects. Donations for these efforts can be made to the Montrose Community Foundation.

"The Uncompahgre Riverway Master Plan contains a vision of what the river corridor can become, but the acquisition of this property illustrates what it will take to realize that vision — a cooperative effort between local government, businesses, land owners and individuals," City Parks Planner Dennis Erickson said.

kohare@watchnewspapers.com

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