City, CDOT seek to pave over differences

by Lynn Burton
Post Independent Staff

State and local officials are slated to get together this week to straighten out the Grand Avenue Paving Project, although a state official said the project is about the same as first presented.

“The scope hasn’t changed,” said Steve Olson, the Grand Avenue Paving Project manager for the Colorado Department of Transportation. “It’s still a paving project from the Grand Avenue bridge to 23rd Street.”

The 11-month, $3 million project, is slated for Feb. 1 to Dec. 31, 2004.

The plan calls for ripping the Grand Avenue roadway down to dirt and repaving it with concrete from the Grand Avenue Bridge to just south of the 11th Street, and with asphalt to 23rd Street. The 13th and 14th street intersections would also be paved with concrete.

The Glenwood Springs City Council asked staff members during Thursday’s meeting to schedule a meeting with CDOT, after learning the department proposes to close the 9th, 10th and 11th street intersections at the same time during construction next summer.

Mayor Don Vanderhoof was most vocal about the simultaneous closures.

“What concerns me more than anything else is the closure of the three intersections at once,” Vanderhoof told the City Council. “The engineering should be better than that. They’ve got to understand that, and change it.”

No CDOT representatives attended the City Council meeting.

The Glenwood Springs Downtown Development Authority first protested the GAPP last week, after the city forwarded a CDOT letter that outlined phasing for construction.

In a memo, DDA board members told the city CDOT has deleted enhancements from the GAPP, such as colored concrete intersections.

Olson said CDOT is willing to work with the city or DDA if they want to pay for enhancements as part of the overall project. But the GAPP funding is coming from the department’s Surface Treatment Fund, and can’t be used for other purposes, Olson said.

The DDA also suggested CDOT divert funds from the GAPP to an environmental impact study for an alternate Highway 82 route around town.

“We can’t do that,” Olson said. “Those funds aren’t designated for that.”

Olson said the Glenwood Springs city staff understands funds can’t be diverted for an environmental impact study, and added, “It appears the DDA doesn’t understand that.”

– Staff writer Greg Masse contributed to this report.

Contact Lynn Burton: 945-8515, ext. 534

Support Local Journalism

Support Local Journalism

Readers around Glenwood Springs and Garfield County make the Post Independent’s work possible. Your financial contribution supports our efforts to deliver quality, locally relevant journalism.

Now more than ever, your support is critical to help us keep our community informed about the evolving coronavirus pandemic and the impact it is having locally. Every contribution, however large or small, will make a difference.

Each donation will be used exclusively for the development and creation of increased news coverage.