GMWSD Board of Directors Statement Regarding Ravine Crossings

GMWSD Board of Directors Statement Regarding Ravine Crossings

Jan 12, 2023

The decision to close pedestrian access to these structures was a result of Green Mountain Water and Sanitation District (GMWSD) acting to prevent environmental damage which would occur if one of these structures collapses and breaks the wastewater pipe underneath it

The issue with the structures began when the City of Lakewood first noticed the unstable condition of one structure and closed it in 2019. At the time, Lakewood assumed ownership. With time, that changed. The city told GMWSD the structure was the district’s sole responsibility, due to the district’s pipes running under the structure. Lakewood has claimed no ownership and declined to assist with structure repair.

GMWSD assumed total responsibility to move the project forward to avoid an environmental catastrophe. Due to severe erosion along the park trail, the structure is in danger of collapse. If the support collapses, the wastewater pipe under the structure will break and release raw effluent into the Bear Creek drainage system.

GMWSD has demonstrated a willingness to cover costs that we didn’t agree with, to do right by our residents and the environment. We have shown we will do everything we can.

What we cannot do is turn our water district into a park district. We have reached our limit – legal and liability issues prevent us from operating park facilities. Without cooperation from the City of Lakewood as the park operator, we must close the structures to pedestrian access.

Fortunately, as of Tuesday evening (01/10/2023), the City of Lakewood has signaled willingness to resume discussions. 

With both parties’ cooperation, GMWSD has every expectation that an agreement can be reached to allow the north structure to remain open.