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Handout, WIP of 07/02/02DO NOT REMOVE - PRAB File Materia] .~-, aw,.. WEEKLY INFORMATION PACKET MEMORANDUM TO: Mayor Will Toor Members of City Council FROM: Ron Secnst, City Manager Jan Geden, Director, Pazks and Recreahon Department Ned Wilhams, Director of Pubhc Works - Uhlthes Doug Hawthorns, Pazks Supermtendent DATE: July 2, 2002 SUBJECT: Update on the unpacts of the drought at Pleasant View Fields and other Pazk and Recreahon areas and provide mformatron on a Pubhc meetwg held with the Soccer Commumty The pucpose of ttus memorandum ~s to mform Counc~l about issues surroundmg the effects of drought on pazk and recreation areas and to mform Council on the results of the public meehng concemmg the drought held at Meadows Branch Library on June 27, 2002 The Pazks and Recreahon Deparhnent held tkus pubhc meehng to uiform the soccer commumty and other mterested cihzens about the field mamtenance, programmmg and imgahon plan for Pleasant View Fields Backeround On May 24, 2002, the Parks and Recreahon Department enacted a Water Conservation Plan for urban parks This Plan was m response to the City's call for a 25% reduchon of outside treated ungahon water The reduction plan for ungaring Pazk and Recreahon facihhes, mcludmg speciahzed athlehc facilihes Lke Pleasant View, was the same as for residenhal and commercial properhes Crtywide Thus, all pazk and recreahon facilihes aze bemg ungated two tunes per week, fifteen muiutes per zone. The result of the reduchons at Pleasant View Fields is that less than 25 mches of ungahon water are being apphed weekly to the fields Noanal irngarion dunng summer weather at Pleasant View would see 1 5 mches of ungation water put on the fields weekly Dunng the past three weeks, the combmahon of little natural ratnfall, hot temperatures, low relahve humidity and effects of the ungahon reducrion has taken a toll on most pazk and recreahon turf azeas No area has seen the direct effects as qmckly than at Pleasant View F~elds. The 9-field complex is recogmzed m the soccer commumty as the best soccer facihty m the State The fields at Pleasant View aze a mixture of bluegrass and rye grass These turf fields uhhze a sand base that is advantageous m ram or wet condihons and allows piay eazher than other facihUes But the same sand base dunng a drought condihon has hastened the die off of turf The root system of the turf extends 8-12 mches m the sand. The current reduced ungation water is only moistemng the top 2-3 ~ 'W... mches of the root ball, and does not extend the water mto the full mediutn of the root zone As a -~ result, eight of the nuie fields have sustamed senous damage. All of the rye gass is dead In lazge expansive areas, the bluegrass has gone dormant and ~t is probable that a ma~onty of ttus turf has died Recovery will require aenficahon of the exishng turf, removmg all of the dead thatch, total reseedmg and fertihzation of the facihty AdcLhonally, rt is probable that some type of a broadcast herbicide apphcahon wtll be necessary to remove the weed seeds that aze growmg m the twf Once the facihty is reseeded, a mmunum of one mch per day of imgahon water must be apphed unhl the grass has matured mto huf capable of sustammg soccer play It is estunated that a muumum of 6-8 weeks will be needed to grow turf, resultmg m the loss of at least one seasons worth of play Cost estunates to return the fields to basic condiuon exceed $ 37,000 Revenue loss for one season could be as high as $83,OOQ dependuig on which season is elurunated Dunng the past two weeks, Pazk and Recreahon staff has been workmg with Pubhc W orks to enact an alternate plan for providmg addrtional imgahon to Pleasant View fields A separate field maintenance Plan has been approved by Public Works on a tnal basis untrl July 31st, wtuch will allow for 1 mch of imgation to be placed on Ftelds # I, 4 and 7 covenng approximately 9 acres This will enable these three fields to recerve two hours of imgahon water per week, mstead of the 30 muiutes under the current reduchon plan The ottter 6 fields w~ll contmue to be ungated 2 hmes per week, 15 muiutes per zone. The additional ungahon wili come from wrtlun the allocahon for Pazks and Recreaaon The 9 4-acre Columbia Cemetery is not bemg imgated ttus summer because there is no automated, underground imgation system The approxunate 25 mches of ungahon water per week from Columbia Cemetery will be t~ansferred to Pleasant View for the remamder of the season The other 50 mches will come from a reallocat~on of tmgahon water from other urban ~ park areas Approxunately 36 acres of estabhshed urban pazks will receive one less day of watenng ~ on an alternate schedule each week so that water can be allocated to Pleasant V~ew Staff will be reviewmg the playmg condihons at Pieasant View each week until further nohce, to determine the effects of addihonal ungation and contmued usage on the facilrty If there is a noticeable diYference m the turf quahty with the addihonal rrngahon and httle impact on the pazks with reduced tmgahon, we will wnhnue the reallocahon Plan If ~t is deemed to be meffeckve, then we may cancel the tnal and retum to the ongmal water reduchon Plan Staff has told the soccer and rugby commucuty that the facihty is open as usual, but we have agreed to grve usecs of the facihty five days nohce if the fields aze to be closed due to drought effects and safety Pubhc Meetms with the Soccer Commumtv On June 27, 2002, the Department held a meetmg at Meadows Branch Libiary with representaaves of the soccer commucuty and other mterested publics A letter was sent to the soccer clubs on June 19, 2002 to special mterest groups who use Pleasant View and the meetmg was nohced m the Daily Camera Approxunately tturty people representmg Boulder Jumor Soccer/NOVA Soccer Club, Boulder County Foree, Boulder Rugby Club, Grass Roots Ulhmate Fnsbee, Boulder Valley School Distnct, Umverstty of Colorado and Colorado Rapids Reserve came to the meetmg Ned Williams gave an overnew of the current drought condthons and outlmed the water restnchons for the commumty Doug Hawthome outlmed the Water Conservahon Plan for Pazks and Recreahon and ~ ~ identrfied the mamtenance and rev~sed imgahon plan for Pleasant View Fields Recreatron staff provided an update on programmmg and usage issues Staff provided uiformation to the attendees on pro~ected costs of replacement of the fields and esUmated hme for the fields to grow back Staff also mformed the attendees that we are seekmg other altemahves to usmg City treated water on the Pleasant View complex in the future, mcluding lookwg for ditch shares, reusmg water or researctung artificial type turfs. Cmzens attendmg the meetmg felt that this solution did not address the lazger picture Attendees not only razsed concem about losmg turf at Pleasant View, but also expressed concems about the effects of the drought on the Pazks system m general The followmg ~ssues were articulated regardmg the current conservahon plan 1 Consider pnonhzmg water usage for azeas more heavily used by the pubhc Special considerahon should be given to Pleasant View based on the large numbers of people using the facihty 2. Due to the fact that spnnkler systems m parks cover such lazge areas, the 15 mwutes, twice a week requuement dces not provide enough water to keep turf m pazks alrve Tkus requu~ement favors mamtammg residential turf but not pazk turf Apply a different standard for pubhc use lands The requisite should be a Formula to keep pazk turf alive. Standards for pazk turf must be ad~usted to keep the turf alive /'^ 3 Pubhc places deserve special considerahon The cit~zens of Boulder are passionate about theu `~..- parks. Due to the resourcefiilness of Boulder cit~zens, a siguficant surplus of water savmgs over the target has been ach~eved How aze we usmg the surplus~ People would probably conserve more if they knew that theu pazks were at nsk and would probably be willmg to have more stnngent restnctions placed on residenhal use so that a cnsis can be avoided and pazkland saved. One of the overarclung issues that deeply concerned those m attendance was the fact that the Ciry oF Boulder accounu for only 3% of the total water annually used m Boulder Of the 3%, Pazks and Recreahon is the largest consumer uhhzmg 75% of that allocahon Although the City's reasons for conservmg water revolve azound havmg dnnkuig water next sprmg and sufficient water to fight fires, rt was azgued that the small percentage of total water consumed by Parks and Recreahon would not siguficandy affect those efforts It was recommended that the addihonal surplus over target realized since the water conseroahon program began should be allocated to pazks based on the number of gallons necessary to keep pazk turf alrve Attendees noted that tlus addihonal allocahon should not be mtended to keep turf lush, but to keep turf ahve and prevent further loss Overall, those m attendance at the public meehng requested the Pazks and Recreahon Department Present Council with an estunated number of nulhons of gallons of water used presently (after drought reduchons) and an eshmated number of gallons needed to retazn the viab~lity of parkland Water surpluses reahzed from cirizen conservation efforts should be allocated towazd savmg pazk turf Cihzens may be wilhng to enact more restnchons m order to save the pazks ~r ~ 2 Explore other types of water for ungahon - we should not be ungahng pazks with potable water " 3 Capture water runoff at Pleasant View wrth a pump or cistem - utilize a vanety of altemaeve strategies to save and reuse water pon't let this wvestment die 4 Allow Pazks and Recreahon the ability to deternune the best way to use theu current allocahon - 15 mmutes a day, two times per week may not be as effechve as watenng once a week for'h hour a tune 5 Inveshgate the use of artificial turf at Pleasant View - advances m that arena have been noteworthy 6 Ask people who use the fields to brmg water w~th them and put on the fields 7 Determme if the fields at Pleasant View aze salvageable If not, consider not watenng them anymore Sustamabilitv of Park Landscanes In order to restore and susta~n pazk and athlehc field turf; it is cleaz that addiuonal imgahon water above the current allocation will be needed Tivs will requue mcreastng watenng times and schedules Although cihzens at the pubhc meetmg requested that we provide an estunate of the number of galions of water that will be needed to retam the viability of parkland system wide, provtdmg accurate estunates will be a challenge There aze so many vanables m estunahng the amount of ungation water needed This wdl depend on solar radiahon, temperature, wmd, hurrudiry, and natural rauifall Addihonally, our ungat~on systems and spec~fic imgahon heads put out different preciprtahon rates Some irngahon heads provide 360 degrees of coverage, some only provide '/a coverage or less Pazk azeas vary m size and the landscapes aze different In general, '~ more water will be needed on newly planted turf m areas where there aze few shade trees, than estabhshed hu-f m pazk azeas with lazge shade trees A basic rule of thumb for sustauung bluegass turf requues a mm~mum of 1 0 mches of precipitatron on a weekly basis Specifically, m order to deliver approximately 1 0 mch of water to 475 mdividual ungahon heads on 29 acres of turf at Pleasant View, 700,000 gallons will be needed per week Under the onginal allocahon schedule of puthng out 24 mches of ungahon water per week, Pleasant View was usmg approxunately 175,000 gallons of water per week In City Pazks covenng approxunately 250 acres, mmus Pleasant View and other ballfield wmplexes, we eshmate that we were usmg approxunately 2 1 million gallons of water per week under the onginal watenng schedule of 2 tunes per week, 15 mmutes per zone In order to bump ttus coverage to 1 0 mches of ungahon water per week on a worse case scenano, we estunate that an addihonal 4 3 milhon gallons will be needed per week to aclueve t2us schedule. The Pazks and Recreahon Department currently depends on monthly reads from Public Works of specific pazk water meters to detemune actual ungahon water usage We aze currently embarkuig on a major capital pro~ect to computenze our ungahon system. Tlus program, as a result of recommendahons provided m the Envuonmental Audit, will provide us with an abihty to read water flowu~g through mdividual pazk valves on an hourly basis The pro~ect will not be complete unul the end of 2003 ..,..