State-of-the-art shooting on target for Gypsum | AspenTimes.com

State-of-the-art shooting on target for Gypsum

Katie Drucker
Vail correspondent
Aspen, CO Colorado
Special to the Vail DailyA tactical shooting building called On-Target has signed a ground lease with the town of Gypsum, Colorado. The facility would provide a realistic environment to train military, law enforcement and civilians
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GYPSUM, Colo. ” If funding comes to fruition, a new $3 million to $4 million house will be built in Gypsum, Colo. But no family will be moving in and gunfire will be welcomed.

This house will be a “three directional tactical shooting building” called On-Target. It will be a unique facility ” with only a few similar to it in the nation. All the walls, floors and ceilings of this 5,000-square-foot house, one part of a 10,000 square foot facility, will be armored to enable live-fire training.

A ventilation system will be in place to suck out tear gas or grenade smoke in 30 seconds or less. Reconfigurable walls will enable an unlimited number of specific indoor layouts to be replicated, such as a methamphetamine lab or a hostage situation for law enforcement practice.

The facility also will be outfitted with infrared for night training, a catwalk on the second floor for instructors to observe, doors that can be blown off and then re-hung, and video cameras in each room to record for teaching purposes.

This facility is intended to provide a realistic environment to train military, law enforcement and civilians for entries, home defense and other indoor situations. Skills such as shooting around corners, clearing a room and going down a hallway to look for the enemy will be taught in this facility.

“Essentially it allows law enforcement and civilians to practice in a real world environment,” said Matt Bayley, a professional empty-hand and firearm close-quarter combat instructor and On-Target shareholder. “It is one thing to practice on a range but it is another thing to practice in a simulated house situation.”

Eagle County Deputy Sheriff’s deputy David Proctor agrees.

“Every time the sheriff’s office goes on a Special Weapons And Tactics call we set up a simulated view of the structure,” said Proctor. “We have used vacant apartments with the same layout, tape outlines. This would just enhance it.”

This facility is intended to attract tourists as well as law enforcement and military personnel ” making Eagle County an attractive location.

“The average skier who comes to the resort for a seven-day ski vacation only skis three and one-half days,” said Rick Adams, of On-Target, Inc. The shooting house could provide tourists another option, he continued.

“It will be a destination resort/world class shooting operation,” said Adams.

Gypsum’s central location between two world-renowned ski resorts, Aspen and Vail, is ideal. The Eagle County Regional Airport’s close proximity to this site will help business, too.

The facility will be located in the Gypsum shooting range, an area already zoned for gunfire, making the building process easier, noted Adams.

“Investors will build the building, the town will lease the land,” said Jeff Shroll, Gypsum town manager.

Adams and Bayley report six people eager to fund this project and cited Springfield Armory, a leading gun manufacturer, as one interested investor.

The news of Springfield Armory potential funding eased concerns Proctor had about the facility.

“They wouldn’t put their money on anything not reputable,” said Proctor.

Although the funding is not yet certain, a 10-year lease between On-Target and the town of Gypsum was approved at a Jan. 27 town board meeting.

The money from the lease and some sales tax generated from this facility will be put back into the shooting range as a whole.

“This facility will help the community,” said Adams. Not only did he cite the money from the lease agreement, but said his project will attract people and businesses to Gypsum.

Other stipulations in the lease agreement include a Gypsum residents clause and a background check requirement.

“It is a rich man’s game. We are talking several thousand dollars for a few-day shoot,” said Shroll. But Gypsum residents will have the opportunity, once a month, to shoot in this facility at cost. Deals will also be offered for Eagle County residents.

“People who fly in on their jets will pay a lot more than people who live in Eagle County,” said Bayley.

Background checks will be required to shoot in the facility.

“We don’t want felons or people who have been convicted of domestic violence in this facility,” says Adams. “We are very cautious about that.”

Adams also reassures that ammunition and all firearms on site ” those that will be rented and sold ” will be stored in an underground concrete bunker surrounded by a vault.

This 10,000-square-foot facility, including the three directional shoot house, a locker room, parking and a indoor target range, could be completed as early as this fall.

Once funding is finalized and infrastructure is laid, estimated to take 4 to 6 months, the actual building will be constructed in two to four weeks, explained Adams.

The building will be brought in on semi-trucks and will be almost a carbon copy of similar structures used by the military and FBI.

“We are excited about it and think it will be a great draw for the town of Gypsum and Eagle County in general,” said Adams.

“The Second Amendment says people can carry guns. The better they train, the better we all are,” said Proctor.


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