Residents engage in plans for Clifton Community Campus

Whitewater, De Beque, and Loma will also be getting community halls
The event featured information on the project's plans so far.
The event featured information on the project's plans so far.(KKCO/KJCT)
Published: Aug. 19, 2021 at 10:18 PM MDT
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GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. (KKCO) - Residents got the chance to add their suggestions to plans for a new community campus in Clifton Thursday evening at Rocky Mountain Elementary. This new community hall and campus is one of several that the Mesa County Commissioners have planned. Others will be found in Whitewater, De Beque, and Loma. The county invited Clifton residents to engage with the planning process as the campus takes shape.

According to Clifton resident Hugo Morena, “We want them to voice their opinions on what they want in the building, so it’s not just the commissioners putting up a building and putting whatever they want to put in there. We want it to be community driven.”

Organizers are planning on building a library, early childhood education center, event space, and more to the Clifton community campus. Commissioner Scott McInnis shared his vision for future community investments in the area. “The county is earmarking probably around $15 million to $20 million to go into this Clifton area. On top of that, we got the CDOT doing highway improvements, so we’re, we’re a group of people at the county commission that are very very excited about Clifton. This promise was made a long long time ago to Clifton, for a community hall for example as it was with De Beque, as it was with Loma and Whitewater. We’re going to fulfill that promise.”

A promise that was made back in the 1980′s. McInnis explained that the tax revenue intended for the community halls projects ended up defraying lost revenue from Exxon closing down operations in the county.

Clifton resident Rennae MacFarlane added that, “And I believe this will be a way to bring them a place where they feel identity with Clifton and where they’ll be able to get to know people when we have events and different things. So I’m super excited, the proposal sounds really good to me.”

The county is looking to buy a grass field from Mesa County Valley School District 51 to use as the site of the campus. It is located on D 1/2 Rd. right next to Rocky Mountain Elementary.

The county is still in the earlier phases of planning for the new campus. Organizers hope to break ground on the project by the spring of 2022. Most of the funding will be coming from the county, with the rest expected to be brought in through grants.

Other amenities the county has in mind for the project include a community garden, job fairs, and health clinics among others.

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