Montrose City Council is expected to consider a new lease agreement for the Montrose Botanic Gardens at a future meeting.
The Gardens, located at 1800 Pavilion Drive, is city owned and is leased to the Montrose Botanical Society.
The consideration involves a new 25-year lease that would expire in 2046. The current lease, which started in 1996, expires in 2046.
The new lease, a “mid-term amendment,” is being considered to reflect the “growth of the Botanic Gardens over the past 25 years, plans for future growth and expansion of services it offers to the community,” Ross Valdez, the city’s community engagement specialist, said during a work session on Monday.
Changes from a new lease are expected to include:
• A commitment from the city to provide free treated water, as well as irrigation water, in support of the Gardens. There’s 1.9 million gallons of treated water committed to MBT, in addition to 12.3 acre shares of irrigation water, Valdez said.
• Description of fee-based use of the Botanic Gardens, which includes rentals and photography sessions, so there’s a policy and procedure in place for such events.
• Addition, and recognition, of a conceptual master plan, which proposes an environmental education center and additional improvements. Included is the requirement of approval from city council before master plan components are implemented.
• A clarification of guidelines — to align with other city owned properties — surrounding approval of improvements to the property.
• A clause that states the city would maintain the property if the Montrose Botanical Society is no longer able to do so.
“It’s been quite a learning experience, and the city’s making changes and we’re part of that change, and we’re thrilled to be able to continue our volunteer efforts with the city,” said Lorraine Shide, president of the Montrose Botanical Society.
The lease is expected to be considered by city council on Oct. 19.