New Track and Field for Fort Collins High School

It’s safe to say that schools are undergoing numerous changes this year. While most of them come with a host of new challenges, we’re thrilled to add a positive change to the mix! We recently finished a complete renovation of Fort Collins High School’s track and field and are excited to share the details.

 

The project ran from July-October 2020, and improvements consisted of a new synthetic football field, new track, and new long jump and pole vault runways. The updates replaced old, worn out elements to improve safety and usability for student athletes. The endeavor was unique in that the project team was able to reuse some of the existing drainage features, adding to the project’s sustainability.

 

We couldn’t have accomplished this project without our dedicated project team. Special thanks to Poudre School District, BHA Design, Academy Sports Turf, and a strategic team of subcontractors.

 

We look forward to students using these spaces for many years to come!

RiNO Promenade: Beautifying Denver and Reclaiming Nature

Over the years, ECI has been fortunate to work on numerous projects along the South Platte River in Denver – Confluence Park, Platte Farm Detention Basin, and 39th Avenue Greenway, just to name a few. We are thrilled to announce that one of our newest projects, RiNO Promenade, is continuing the beautification of this region and will provide recreational opportunities for generations to come.

 

A New Space for Recreation in Denver

The RiNO Promenade will combine recreation, leisure, the natural environment, and the vibrancy of the neighborhood to create one all-encompassing linear park along the South Platte River. The elaborate outdoor space will span from 29th Street to 38th Street and connect the new River North Park at 35th and Arkins with Globeville Landing Park at 38th. Promenade visitors will be able to enjoy numerous unique elements, such as an elevated walkway with seating areas, outdoor classrooms, and viewing platforms 16 feet above the river bank to fully take in the beauty of the South Platte River.

 

In addition to providing new recreational experiences, the project will also enhance natural vegetation. Stormwater will be treated using landscape-based water quality areas, which will hydraulically connect vegetated swales with chase drains and shallow conveyances. Existing outfalls that served Arkins Court as a street will be reused for the stormwater from the Park and adjacent roads, but with added water quality areas to clean the water before it goes into the river.

 

A Vision in the Works for Years

The RiNO Promenade – and revitalization of this entire region – has been a Denver dream for many years and has involved the leadership of several entities. Two primary key players have been The Greenway Foundation and Wenk Associates.

 

The South Platte River had historically been treated as a landfill, due to the booming industrial activity in this part of Denver during past decades. With an emphasis on sustainability and environmental preservation, ideas of improvements have circulated for numerous years. Starting more than 10 years ago, The Greenway Foundation began working with the City and County of Denver to create a plan detailing how river corridor restoration could turn RiNO into one of the most thriving areas of Denver. Thanks to this organization’s tireless advocacy, several stretches of the South Platte River have undergone complex improvements in recent years that have resulted in significant environmental and economic benefits.

 

Wenk Associates has served as the project’s lead consultant and architect, as well as the master planner, since 2015. The original goal for this stretch was to accommodate population growth by creating a park where people could work and play, while also enhancing the South Platte River. Since then, the vision has evolved to meet the demographic and ecological needs of the area. Under Wenk’s leadership, the initial phase, RiNO Park, has been completed and opened to the public in August 2020. The current section, or “Promenade Phase I,” is expected to be completed in fall 2021.

 

Long-Lasting Impacts on Five Points and Globeville Neighborhoods

While all Coloradans will have the opportunity to enjoy RiNO Promenade, the project will have a profound impact on the nearby Five Points and Globeville Neighborhoods. This region has lacked comfortable green space in the past, and the new promenade will provide a much-needed flexible space for residents to gather and play in a welcoming environment, while still retaining the arts and culture landscape for which the region is best known.

 

“It is our hope that the RiNO region continues to celebrate and steward the River that is the heart of its name,” said Devon Buckels, Director of The Water Connection, the water resources and policy initiative of The Greenway Foundation. “This celebration can take the form of supporting and advocating for funding measures for continued improvements and enhancements, taking steps to protect the water quality in the River by supporting projects to clean stormwater flow before it enters the river, and welcoming people of all generations and backgrounds, RiNO residents and others, to enjoy the City’s most magnificent natural resource.”

 

Navigating Challenges and an Everchanging Landscape

As with any complex project, the RiNO Promenade won’t come without its challenges. One potential obstacle involves two major Metro Sewer interceptors that carry sewage beneath the project site to the treatment facility downstream. Furthermore, the area surrounding the project site is built on fill that is more than 100 years old, requiring the construction team to delicately treat all soils as though they are contaminated. Fortunately, ECI has ample experience responsibly dealing with contaminated soil from our work on Confluence Park in 2015-2017.

 

In addition to these known challenges, the unknown factors will also demand extra attention and flexibility. Because the neighborhoods and environment in this region are constantly evolving, the Promenade will have to adapt with its surrounding to maintain accessibility and functionality for its many visitors.

 

A Collaboration Among Numerous Entities

The RiNO Promenade is a collaboration among numerous dedicated entities. Special thanks to the following for being a part of this iconic project:

 

Owner/Client: Denver Parks and Recreation

Project Management: Denver Public Works

Client: North Denver Cornerstone Collaborative

Lead Consultant & Landscape Architect: Wenk Associates

General Contractor: ECI Site Construction Management

Project Partners: The Greenway Foundation and RiNO BID

Neighbor and Advocate: RiNO Arts District

Public Art: Denver Arts & Venues

 

We look forward to sharing updates as RiNO Promenade progresses!

 

Rendering courtesy of the City and County of Denver.

View more renderings of RiNO Promenade from the City and County of Denver here.

Pocket Parks and Plum Trees: Painted Prairie Promises a Unique Neighborhood Experience

You know what they say: A new neighborhood is only as good as its outdoor spaces. Or at least that’s what we say at ECI! Over the past several months, we have had the incredible opportunity of creating parks and gathering spaces at the new Painted Prairie housing development, located near DIA in Aurora. The project consisted of a main neighborhood park and five smaller pocket parks, all of which have unique features and purposes.

These parks are spread across 22 acres and will serve as communal gathering spaces for new residents. They include numerous fascinating amenities, such as custom play structures, sport fields, community gardens, sand beaches, shade structures, etc.

In many ways, Painted Prairie has been one of our most unique projects, due to the creative architectural elements designed by Civitas. For example, one of the parks is named Plum Park and is filled with different types of fruiting plum trees. Another park is named Lavender Park and features hundreds of lavender plants and wildflowers. Furthermore, there is an apple orchard in the main neighborhood park and an area called the “butterfly garden,” which is filled with flowers that naturally attract butterflies. The butterfly garden also has weaving crusher fines paths that resemble a butterfly wing.

Throughout this project, ECI self-performed much of the earthwork and several other aspects. Our team created berms, naturally occurring land formations like the “arroyo,” and wore many different hats to help all of our subcontractors with their work and transform the land into the envisioned end product. Expert scheduling and coordination was top priority in order to progress alongside the land being developed.

Special thanks to all our collaborative partners: Civitas, AquaTerra Environmental, Beanstalk Builders, BrightView Landscape, and a strategic team of subcontractors. We look forward to residents enjoying these unique outdoor spaces for many years to come!

A New Town Gathering Space: Severance Community Park Breaks Ground

The ECI crew has built a number of community parks over the past several years – Twin Silo Park in Fort Collins, Mehaffey Park in Loveland, Margaret Carpenter Park in Thornton, just to name a few. These projects are some of the most rewarding because we get to watch families in our community enjoy them for years to come. For this reason, we are thrilled to announce that construction for Severance Community Park has officially begun!

The project broke ground in January 2020 and is expected to conclude in the summer of 2020. The park will be located in the northwest corner of WCR 72 and WCR 23 in Severance, Colorado.

“ECI is thrilled to be part of another community park in our northern Colorado backyard,” said Ted Johnson, president of ECI. “The new Severance Community Park will provide great new amenities for Severance residents, as well as a place to gather and recreate. We look forward to incorporating local subcontractors and tradespeople during construction so they can put their footprint on a project that serves the community.”

The $2.5 million project will be delivered under the CM/GC method and consist of numerous unique aspects:

  • New turn lanes into the park
  • 26 acres of earthwork
  • A large sod field for town events
  • New parking
  • Grading and infrastructure for future baseball and softball fields
  • A sledding hill

ECI is excited to partner with the Town of Severance and Colorado Civil Group for this project. We look forward to sharing progress updates in the coming months!

A Win for the Home Team: Jefferson County Public Schools

After many months of hard work, we are pleased to announce that the Jefferson County Public Schools Field Improvement project was finished in late November.

 

The ECI team began the massive project in April 2019, and we are proud to share that this was ECI’s largest contract to date.  ECI was hired by Jefferson County Public Schools to conduct site improvements for nine public schools: Arvada High School, Chatfield High School, Conifer High School, Dakota Ridge High School, Evergreen High School, Lakewood High School, Ralston Valley High School, Three Creeks K-8, and West Jefferson Middle School.

 

The improvements largely consisted of replacing grass sports fields with synthetic turf and the installation of post-tension tennis and track facilities. These renovations were a part of an extensive voter-approved $567 million capital improvement program that included both internal and external updates.

 

This project was successfully completed thanks to the dedication of numerous entities: Jefferson County Public Schools, Hord Coplan Macht, JVA Engineering, and a strategic team of subcontractors.

 

We look forward to continuing our partnership with Jeffco Public Schools in the future!

 

The Home Stretch: Restoring the Big Thompson Legacy

When the rain started falling in Colorado in September 2013, no one expected it to turn into one of the most destructive floods in our state’s history. After a few days of intense rainfall, numerous regions were left with demolished roads, bridges, parks, homes and waterways. The path to revitalization has been a slow-moving one, to say the least, but the end of the tunnel is near. ECI is proud to have been a part of this journey by restoring the final stretch of the Big Thompson River that was impacted by the 2013 flood.

The Final Stretch of the Big Thompson River

ECI was selected by the Big Thompson Watershed Coalition to complete the design and fast-track construction of this final stretch of river, which included Reaches 30 and 31 west of Loveland. Reach 30 spans the Big Thompson River from Rossum Drive to Namaqua Avenue and includes the Rist-Goss Ditch. The entire project consisted of 8,525 feet of river corridor restoration.

Big Thompson River Flood Damage

During the 2013 flood, the river avulsed in multiple locations, resulting in extensive damage to adjacent properties and the destruction of nearby banks. Temporary repairs were made, but it wasn’t until late 2018 that a long-term solution was set in motion. The restoration project began in November 2018 and, thanks to concentrated management and determination, it was completed a mere eight months later in July 2019.

Big Thompson River Restoration Process

Along with Otak Inc., CDM Smith and a dedicated team of subcontractors, our crew made significant improvements to the river:

  • Increased the channel floodplain connection for a range of flow events
  • Improved river and riparian habitat by increasing organic matter in the reach through the addition of three large wood structures
  • Encouraged channel narrowing in over-widened portions by adding point bars throughout the Reach
  • Reduced surface erosion and increased riparian and upland habitat through revegetation
  • Improved sediment conveyance and fish passage by removing and replacing the existing Rist-Goss dam with a series of riffle structures

It’s always a privilege to take on a project right in our own backyard, and it’s even more of a privilege when that project is restoring a region that holds significant meaning for so many people. Learn more about the Big Thompson Legacy project, and check out some of the project photos below!

 

 

 

A Growing Park for a Growing Community: ECI Begins Construction on Timnath Community Park Phase Two

The word’s gotten out, and the votes are in: Colorado is the place to be. It’s no secret that our state’s population has boomed in recent years, and many small towns are witnessing exponential growth. As more and more young families are planting their roots in northern Colorado, the Town of Timnath is no exception to the recent growth explosion. The current Timnath Community Park, located at 5500 Summerfields Pkwy., is expanding to accommodate this increase, and ECI is thrilled to be a part of it!

 

Construction of Timnath Community Park Phase Two officially began in late November 2019, with ECI at the helm as the project’s Construction Manager/General Contractor. The second phase will be constructed across 12 acres and is being delivered under the CM/GC process. The first work package that includes the civil infrastructure and certain site features will be approximately $1.5 million, with the remainder of the project being incorporated before year end. The park will consist of numerous unique features:

 

  • A natural style of playground
  • A large open play field
  • Additional parking areas
  • A new dog park
  • A custom restroom building

 

“ECI looks forward to partnering with the Town on the construction of another great amenity for the people of Timnath here in northern Colorado,” said Ted Johnson, president of ECI. “The residents of Timnath have high expectations for this next phase of the park, and ECI is proud to have assembled a quality team for construction of this project.”

 

Phase one of Timnath Community Park was completed in summer 2016 and includes a playground, picnic shelter, plaza area, structure for restrooms and storage, and a large open space. It has since become a central location for town events, small concerts and community gatherings.

 

Connecting communities through diverse outdoor spaces is what ECI does best, and we can’t wait to deliver this project for the residents of Timnath!

 

Current Timnath Community Park, courtesy of Timnath.org

Let the Adventure Begin: Poudre River Whitewater Park is Now Open

The idea of a local whitewater park had been a Fort Collins dream for years. Mixing the rushing rapids of mountain life with the adventurous spirit embodied by Coloradans young and old eventually propelled this vision into a reality. After much planning, designing and sheer hard work, the Poudre River Whitewater Park was officially born in October 2019. This is the very first whitewater park to open in northern Colorado, and ECI is proud to include it on our list of completed projects.

A One-of-a-Kind Venue

Construction for the park began in August 2018. It drew ample attention throughout the entire construction process – and for good reason. It includes numerous unique aspects that set it apart from other outdoor venues in the region. Along with boating features for kayaking and tubing, the park has an enormous pedestrian bridge, children’s play area, new paved trails and walkways, and it is adorned with 3,000 willow whips lining the river’s edge.

River Floodplain Improvements

The project purpose wasn’t just for recreation – our team significantly improved the river floodplain. The Poudre River 100-Year floodway was narrowed from 770 to 325 feet wide, and the conveyance of floodwater under the College Avenue Bridge increased from 12,271 to 13,900 cubic feet per second. Additionally, ECI designed, engineered and installed a coffer dam that met all state water requirements to fully divert the Poudre River, without allowing it to flood during construction activities.

Sustainability as a Chief Focus

As with all our projects, sustainability took a front seat during the entire project to preserve the natural habitat. More than 10,000 cubic yards of rock materials are included in the river, and 100 percent of river rock extracted from the Poudre River was repurposed within the park. Similarly, our design team strategically crafted three wooden benches that were repurposed from trees removed from the project site and were placed throughout the park. Our team delicately worked around the historical Coy diversion structure with links to the Poudre river’s storied agricultural past. Finally, as to not negatively impact river inhabitants, we worked with Colorado Parks and Wildlife and a fish biologist to incorporate a fish passage in the Poudre River for safe transport of fish.

A Team Effort

It is because of numerous dedicated entities that the Poudre River Whitewater Park came into fruition. A very special thanks to the following crews: The City of Fort Collins, Anderson Consulting Engineers, BHA Design Inc., S2o Design, and a strategic subcontractor team.

Visit the park, located at 201 E. Vine Drive in Fort Collins, year-round from 5 a.m.-11 p.m.!