College, city change field-use agreement

A two-year transition agreement has been worked out by the city of Coon Rapids (MN) and Anoka-Ramsey Community College for the use and maintenance of the college’s athletic fields.

The Coon Rapids City Council April 21 approved the joint powers agreement that runs through December 2016.

Under the previous agreement, which expired at the end of 2014, the city maintained the college athletic fields and in return, the college allowed the city and Coon Rapids sports organizations to use them.

But the city no longer wants to provide the maintenance, while the college wants to have full control of the soccer field to assure quality for college games in the fall, according to Tim Himmer, city public works director.

To ease the transition, a two-year joint powers agreement has been negotiated with the college taking complete control of the athletic complex and its use Jan. 1, 2017, Himmer told the council.

Under the terms of the agreement outlined by Himmer, the college will maintain all grass turf, including mowing and fertilization that was done by the city before, while the city will maintain the three aglime baseball or softball fields and safety fences for dugouts.

The college will pay the city $1,000 in each of the agreement’s two years for the use of the city’s Wintercrest Park baseball complex for its home baseball games.

In addition, the city will provide portable restrooms, garbage service and scheduling of the baseball or softball fields for use by the affiliated youth ball groups and adult softball organizations.

The college has priority for scheduling fields for college credit classes and athletic events and the city will coordinate its schedule with Rory Larson, college athletic equipment manager, before beginning the scheduling process, providing advance written notification on beginning and ending dates as well as times of these events, but the college will not schedule activities without consulting with the city, according to the agreement.

“Outside of the college’s credit classes and athletic events, the city has priority for scheduling events,” the agreement states.

According to Himmer, the agreement provides a smooth transition, allowing the city, college and user groups to prepare for the changes.

This agreement will also support athletic needs in the city while the Sand Creek Athletic Complex is under redevelopment in 2015 and 2016, Himmer said.

“It provides an opportunity for all user groups to build a relationship with the college,” he said.