Over the past two years, construction work has been occurring at three sites across the city, preparing them for something big — the Gold Line.
The newcommuter rail line opens in six months. But there's still work to be done.
“The hard part is done,” said Maria Vanderkolk, communications manager with the City of Arvada. “The Arvada Ridge and Gold Strike stations are close to completion, but of all our three stations, they are the less complicated. The Olde Town Transit Hub is a City of Arvada project, and we're shooting for substantial completion by Oct. 1.”
The stations, each at a varying level of construction, still have a ways to go before the rail line's October opening.
“Education, entertain and enterprise — that's how we're branding it,” she said. “It will be a huge celebration and a lot of fun, and we're just jazzed and excited about it.”
Located at 60th Street and Sheridan Boulevard, the Gold Strike station represents the “Enterprise” the city would like to see.
“It's an industrial area where we see potential for additional job space,” Vanderkolk said.
This station, approximately 13 minutes from Denver's Union Station, will accommodate 330 parking spaces and approximately 800 passengers boarding on and off the train each day.
According to the Regional Transportation District (RTD), still to complete are curb and gutter work around the bus loop, plaza construction, canopy, ticket and vending machine and trash can installation, final grading and paving, landscaping, completion of the RTD driver relief station, artwork installation, and plaza, platform and parking lot lighting.
The station also will have a public art piece entitled “Gold Pour.” This work, made up of gold glass and mosaic tiles, was chosen because it commemorates the first documented gold strike in Colorado at Ralston and Clear creeks. It will be placed to look as if it was pouring over the station's wall.
Considered the city's and the line's signature station, the Olde Town Transit Hub thematic word is “Entertainment.”
The station will consist of a 600-space parking garage and bus transfer facility. Located between the Arvada Flour Mill and the Olde Town Landmark Theatre, the facility will be about 17 minutes from Union Station and will serve as a hub for commuters, visitors and citywide festivals and events.
“This is our signature station,” Vanderkolk said.
Olde Town's station is the most complicated of the three, Vanderkolk added, and it has the most work left to be completed. The structure still needs light installation and pavers. Ticket kiosk and vending canopy and machines and an art foundation have yet to be constructed on the facility's plaza areas. Total plaza construction, RTD said, is halfway complete.
Lighting, benches, security monitoring system, the public artwork and the RTD driver relief station have also to be installed.
The Olde Town station art, entitled “Track Bone,” is a red Colorado granite piece that will reflect how the railroad once was a backbone for the City of Arvada. It will extend 28 feet in length and be 4 feet, 6 inches high and 7 feet wide.
Nestled near the Red Rocks Community College Arvada campus, the Arvada Ridge station is “Education.”
Located between Lee Street and Kipling Parkway along Ridge Road, this station will be 20 minutes away from Union Station and serve approximately 500 people daily.
With 200 parking spaces, the city said it expects this facility to be used by commuting students and residents.
“I'm really excited about the Arvada Ridge station,” Vanderkolk said. “It's right next to the Red Rocks Health Campus and I think that is going to be a great advantage for us.”
The site also will incorporate more pedestrian access. An underpass is being built at Kipling Parkway to increase safety for pedestrians and bicyclists. An incline trail is also going to be built to give riders a space to exercise.
Here, remaining construction includes: the preparation and pouring of cement sidewalks, ticket and vending machine canopy and bench and security system installation, parking lot paving, landscaping, lighting, public art installation and completion of the driver relief station.
Arvada Ridge's art is entitled “Chromatic Harvest” and was inspired by agriculture and movement. Connecting the past to present, the geometric rows of crops are realized through ceramic steel panels.