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Special meeting for Royal Gorge plans

Special meeting for Royal Gorge plans

CANON CITY, Colo. - The Canon City City Council held a special meeting to go over the final details for the most important construction project the area has seen in decades.

"Picking out the siding, picking out what the deck looks like and picking out what materials the metal is going to be," said city councilman Kevin Ditmore.

It's been half a year since a wildfire destroyed most of the buildings and attractions at the Royal Gorge Bridge and Park.  It'll be more than six months until the park will be fully ready for tourists.

"Fact of the matter is it's a lot of square footage and a lot of work up on a cliff, it is going to take the time it takes," said Jon Mindrup who is a part of the design and construction firm rebuilding the park.

Mindrup told council to expect the Northside Visitors Center to be finished in late July or August.

"It'll be delivered in the shortest possible time it can be delivered," Mindrup said.

Council and a handful of residents who attended the meeting were pleased by what they saw, believing the new structures will fit well for years in the landscape.

But with another tourist season threatened, officials say they will be heavily promoting other activities like rafting, with money gained by grants.

"That'll put a band aid on it, get people coming until the bridge actually opens," Ditmore said.

Park officials say that beginning March 15, the bridge will open for weekend bus tours.

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