Town seeks input on parks, open space, recreation plan

Area Residents Encouraged to Take Survey

By Surveyor staff

The Town of Berthoud has commissioned a parks, open space, recreation and trails master-plan survey as part of an effort to update Berthoud’s existing PORT plan.

The survey implements a two-pronged approach with a mailed survey to 2,000 residents and an online survey that will be available starting on March 2 at Berthoud.org. The surveys are intended to provide a “statistically valid” sample, according to Berthoud’s community development director Curt Freese. A random sampling of Berthoud area residents will receive a survey in the mail, and according to Freese, the surveys have already been mailed out and some residents have already received them.

“The mailed survey was sent to a random sampling of residents,” Freese said. “Since the selection process is random, the results are considered statistically valid. It is also the best way to reach the non-park user, or a resident who is not online.”

In addition, the town invites all area residents to provide feedback and input through an online survey that will go live on March 2; visit Berthoud.org for the link to this survey. While the questions on both surveys are the same, the online survey responses aren’t considered “statistically valid,” Freese said.

“The surveys are on different schedules to encourage the random sample to return their surveys,” Freese said. “Since the questions on both surveys are the same, we find that if they were to run concurrently, many people will choose to only participate in the [online survey] which lessens the statistical validity of the invitation sample.”

Freese expects the survey should take less than 15 minutes for residents to fill out. The responses are critical in determining community values, satisfaction levels, needs and priorities, and demographics for the town’s long-term planning efforts. Sample survey questions include what types of programs, facilities and services area residents want in their parks system and how to prioritize these elements.

The project is led by GreenPlay, LLC, a parks and recreation-focused consulting firm based in Broomfield, with survey and data work done by RRC Associates, a market research and data analysis company. A total of 2,000 households in the Berthoud area will be mailed a survey, and responses from these residents will comprise the statistically-valid sample. The online survey will give all area residents an opportunity to provide feedback, and their responses will be included in the final report. While online results will be kept separate from the statistically-valid responses, these responses are still an important part of the public involvement process.

The consultant plans to present survey findings to Berthoud trustees and the public at the end of March. The survey results will be used in finalizing the town’s PORT plan. The overall PORT plan isn’t expected to completed until early summer, according to Freese.

Residents with questions about the master plan can contact Curt Freese, community development director, at 970-532-2643 or cfreese@berthoud.org.