Pueblo County Parks and Recreation introduced a pair of potential concepts for an upcoming community recreation center on the St. Charles Mesa at a public workshop on Monday.

The St. Charles Mesa Community Recreation Center is an 18.4-acre project between San Pedro Street and South Aspen Road in the Salt Creek neighborhood. Architects from Logan Simpson, the project’s consulting firm, discussed the designs of each concept and received feedback from about 50 community members during the workshop at the existing Pueblo County Recreation Center, 1650 Cooper Place.

Alternative concepts presented during the workshop were meant to show “general space allocation” of the project and were not meant to be detailed plans for the project, said Jana McKenzie, principal landscape architect with Logan Simpson.

“Concept A” and “Concept B” include space for outdoor classrooms, an outdoor basketball court, community garden plots, a flexible turf area, a multipurpose field, a playground, an indoor recreation center, four pickleball courts, a fenced off-leash dog area, a bike park and parking lots.

Colorado State University Extension 4-H services, a small corral and agriculture test plots also will be housed on the property, according to renderings of both alternative concepts.

In Concept A, CSU Extension 4-H classrooms, training rooms and offices would be housed in the existing Pueblo County Recreation Center building. A 15,622-square-foot expansion to the existing recreation center would house a gymnasium with an indoor running track, multipurpose meeting hall shared with CSU extension, kitchen, fitness center, group exercise studio, multiuse classrooms, a teen activity center and tech lounge.

Concept B would include the same amenities but relocate CSU Extension 4-H services to a different building near the north end of the St. Charles Mesa Community Recreation Center project area. The Pueblo County Recreation Center would keep its existing gymnasium with the prospect of building a second gymnasium to accommodate an indoor track.

Another major difference between the two concepts is the location of a Pueblo County Parks Maintenance facility. Concept A places the maintenance facility near the southeast end of the project area. Concept B places the maintenance facility farther north, but closer to residencies along Cooper Place.

“(The maintenance facility) is an industrial facility … It’ll have equipment coming and going all the time,” McKenzie said. “When they start up equipment in the morning, every time they back up, it goes beep, beep, beep, beep, and you have security lights. The real question is, is this a good place right next to a neighbor for that particular action?”

In giving feedback, community members saw benefit to locating the maintenance facility away from residential areas as seen in Concept A, but considered Concept B to have an advantage when it came to the location of CSU Extension 4-H services, according to findings presented by Greg Shaner, director of civil services at Matrix Design Group Inc.

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“Moving the CSU building up to the north gives it an opportunity to become who it is with this accentual feel to it,” Shaner said. “The rec center can also develop what it needs to be on its own … they both need their own identity, and separating them out gives them that ability that time to do that.”

To learn more about the St. Charles Mesa Community Recreation Center project, community members can visit the project website at www.scmesareccenter.com.

Pueblo Chieftain reporter James Bartolo can be reached by email at JBartolo@gannett.com.

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