There's a bit of a thaw in the frosty relations between Ada County and the city of Eagle.
In the late afternoon hours of Oct. 4, Ada County commissioners lifted a stop-work order at the site of mountain bike trail improvements on county-owned land leased by the city of Eagle.
Earlier in the week, the cease-and-desist order appeared at the site after Ada County engineers said they had "some questions and concerns regarding the slope of one of the ridges where the bike trail would be built."
"This work stoppage sign has nothing to do with the proposed snow park. It should be noted that the land is completely owned by Ada County, not the city of Eagle," Larry Maneely, chief of staff to the Ada County commissioners, told Boise Weekly.
But commissioners back-peddled Oct. 4 after what they called "a collaborative conversation involving the Ada County engineer and Parks and Waterways director with Eagle officials and a representative of the bike trail project, Gravity Logic."
County officials said Eagle city officials "have assured the county that proper bonding and insurance obligations have been met by the contractor."
The site plan also established that no native plants should by disturbed by the project and reflects that a bridge will be constructed mid-trail to separate high-speed mountain bikers from those riding at slower speeds, as well as hikers, joggers and horseback riders.
"With this action, Ada County Commissioners have reaffirmed their interest in working cooperatively with the City of Eagle to develop the sports complex into a wonderful asset," commissioners said in their statement.
Meanwhile, county officials are still scheduled to sit down Wednesday, Oct. 9 with the city of Eagle regarding a proposed snow park at an adjacent site.
Ada County commissioners have indicated that they're reluctant to let the park plans move forward because it would would be a for-profit enterprise on public land. Maneely added that the city of Eagle had not secured approval for construction on the land.
Proponents of the snow park argue that Ada County already supports recreational for-profit arrangements, including Epley's Rental at Barber Park, Les Bois horse racing operation at the fairgrounds and professional baseball at Hawks Stadium. But Maneely says those operations were approved through a "public/private for-profit partnership" that required a special contractual arrangement with Ada County.
"If we need to renegotiate the agreement with the city of Eagle for such a partnership, so be it, but until then we want to sit down and discuss the plans and that's what we'll do next Wednesday afternoon," said Maneely.