GGP: One of Pagosa’s Great Civic Projects
The Geothermal Greenhouse Partnership project has been one of Pagosa’s most successful civic efforts over the past several years. Long hours, days and years of working and waiting spearheaded by Michael Whiting over the entire period has resulted in a new park and facility that will be the pride of the area for the future. The all volunteer effort should be seen and understood by all citizens. Plan to attend this information session.
Geothermal Greenhouse Partnership to Hold Information Session for Public
The Pagosa Springs public is invited to an informational meeting by Geothermal Greenhouse Partnership (GGP) on Monday night, January 22, from 6 pm to 7 pm. The GGP Board will host the question and answer session in the South Conference Room of the Aragon Community Center.
The nonprofit GGP is building an educational botanic park in Centennial Park. The group recently received funding for the Community Garden Dome and Innovation Dome. The two new greenhouses will be built in Spring 2018 next to the existing Education Dome and GGP Amphitheater.
What’s ahead for 2018? Educational programming for youth, Lifelong Learning Workshops, the sixth Colorado Environmental Education Film Festival, San Juan Sounds concerts, and the third Colorfest Breakfast with Balloons are being planned by GGP’s supporters. GGP is “Growing Food and Community with Local Energy!”
Centennial Park has come a long way from a rather crude landfill to a spectacular park space with gardens and a new scale of riverwalk work. The early pioneers came into the town area and saw rolling hills down to the river banks. They immediately began the process of scraping off flat spaces and filling in along the river. Over the years the river was pushed to its present day location creating Hermosa Street, the parking area along main street, and the entire Town and Centennial Park area. All sorts of things were thrown into the landfills including bricks from old buildings and whole automobiles. A Ford was removed from the Cotton Hole area during the river restoration project. Later the landfill behind the courthouse was smoothed out and seeded with grass and it became Centennial Park.
Geothermal Greenhouse Partnership to Build Two More Greenhouses
Geothermal Greenhouse Partnership (GGP) will begin construction of its Community Garden Dome and Innovation Dome in spring 2018. These two domes will be installed next to the existing Education Dome in Pagosa Springs’ Centennial Park on a parcel leased from the Town of Pagosa Springs.
The Colorado Water Plan (CWP) Engagement and Innovation Fund granted Geothermal Greenhouse Partnership $174,500 for the construction of the nonprofit organization’s second and third growing domes. The Colorado Water Conservation Board approved the CWP grant earlier in November. These funds, coupled with a $34,000 matching grant from Colorado Garden Foundation awarded last February, allow the GGP to fulfill its agreement to build three geothermal greenhouses.
Geothermal Greenhouse Partnership is a volunteer-driven 501c3 educational organization, building a Pagosa-scale botanic park within Centennial Park on the San Juan River Walk. Its mission is “to educate the community in sustainable agricultural practices by producing food year-round using local renewable energy.” Demonstrating the value of Pagosa’s geothermal resource remains an organizational priority.
The October 2017 Smart Growth America Report listed the GGP as an important amenity for the community. Both the Archuleta County Community Economic Development Action Plan and Downtown Colorado Inc. identified the GGP as a priority for downtown economic revitalization. With the Education Dome completed in 2016, the GGP began fulfilling its mission in 2017.
In GGP’s first year of operations, the Education Dome and Amphitheater became busy gathering places. GGP hosted its 5th Colorado Environmental Film Festival Caravan in downtown Pagosa. Five Lifelong Learning Workshops explored various environmental issues and celebrated the biodiversity of the San Juan River Walk. Two well-attended special events included the first San Juan Sounds live concert and the 2nd Colorfest Breakfast with Balloons. Pagosa’s youth began horticultural activities and GGP’s volunteers nurtured an abundant garden for the community.
2018 promises more classes, educational workshops and special events in Centennial Park. Children from 4-H, public and charter school classrooms, and home schools are already learning each week in the Education Dome. The 6th Environmental Film Festival is planned for mid-April. Lifelong Learning Workshops will include in-depth education about the wise use of Colorado’s water. Live music and performance are planned for the GGP Amphitheater, as well as the 3rd Colorfest Breakfast with Balloons.
The Geothermal Greenhouse Partnership operates through a professional Board of Directors, numerous volunteers, five strategic committees and an enthusiastic membership base. GGP committees include (1) Soil, Seeds and Water; (2) Site; (3) Fundraising and Special Events; (4) Landscaping; and (5) Programming. An informational question and answer session for the community is planned for January 2018.
Last spring Centennial Park was improved with a clean-up of the entire area.