Arnold Barn near Steamboat Ski Area to be moved this fall
In the coming weeks, preparations to move the Arnold Barn will begin at the barn’s current location and its future home. (file photo)
STEAMBOAT SPRINGS — The world changed around the Arnold Barn. In its heyday, the barn served the Arnold family’s dairy farm outside Steamboat Springs city limits.
East of the barn, the Steamboat Ski Area emerged in 1963. Roads cut through the former farmland around the barn, creating banks that flooded the area of the barn into a manmade wetland.
This fall, the barn will be moved from its current location at the northeast corner of the Meadows Parking Lot to a flat about 1,000 feet away at the intersection of Mount Werner Road and Mount Werner Circle.
Preparations to move the barn will begin in the coming weeks, said Arianthé Stettner, of the Save the Arnold Barn community group. Since gaining approval for the move, those organizing it have been completing contracts and behind-the-scenes work to make the move happen.
Construction will soon begin at the barn’s future home and on the barn at its current location. In the new spot, contractors will lay a new foundation for the barn. An interpretive sign will be placed across the street from the barn explaining its history.
There is a lot of work to be done at its current site before the move.
“They have to prepare the pathway (for the move),” Stettner said. “They have to get the permits to get the building on the street. They have to get the barn stabilized for the move and figure out all the engineering, especially the business of going over the wetlands.”
Stettner added that additional permits are necessary to move the barn out of marshy pasture.
“It’s not just like moving it from one meadow to another. Because there are so many public rights of way, wetlands and multiple property owners — it’s just a lot of stuff.”
Stettner said once the actual move begins, it should be complete in one day, though it will be a slow process. To move the barn, a contractor will build up the bottom of the barn with steel girders. The barn will be lifted onto a trailer, and slowly, contractors will inch the barn up Mount Werner Road to the area where The Steamboat Grand’s sign currently stands.
Once the barn is in place, the project will begin a second phase of work on the barn.
“Hopefully, at the end of the day, we get the barn to look like it did in 1928,” Stettner said.
Broken wood in the barn’s siding will be repaired. The roof will see fixes. It’ll get new windowpanes, and doors will be reconstructed “in the fashion of the old doors,” Stettner said.
“Inside — people can’t go in — but there’s a lot of invisible structural work that needs to happen so the building will be secure,” Stettner added. The goal of these preservation efforts, she said, is to make sure the barn stands for decades to come.
Outside of the barn, a trail from The Steamboat Grand to the barn will be built.
“This has captured the imagination of the public,” Stettner said. “It really speaks to the fact that Steamboat Springs values its agricultural heritage and the marriage with skiing and the ski industry.”
Save the Arnold Barn is still accepting donations to help fund preservation and education about the barn. To learn more or make a donation, visit savearnoldbarn.org.
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