A special City Council meeting will be held this Wednesday, Jan. 8, at 6 p.m.
Red Feather Ridge will be asking for the final (we can only hope) time to have their property annexed into the city. IF our council should agree, the next item on the agenda will be for the Red Feather Ridge group to again ask permission to triple the size of their project.
People, pay attention here. This WILL be voted on Wednesday night at 6 p.m.
Let’s fill our beautiful new City Hall to the walls and let our council know what we want (and don’t want) for Glenwood Springs. If you cannot make the meeting and would like to let council know your thoughts, you can send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. Your e-mail will then be placed in each individual council member’s packet.
Dick Prosence and I might be suffering from dimming memory banks but possibly a little public dialog will help in solving our current road problems. Dick was a well-respected Colorado Department of Highways engineer and I was an architecture-land planning student from Berkeley when I-70 came to town. We had different ideas. Dick is right in his PI letter of Jan. 1, CDOH did come to town to TELL us the location of the new four-lane, not to discuss options. But an option was presented in 1964 that would not split Glenwood down the middle. Many local people saw this plan’s benefits. But CDOH said it would be expensive and difficult engineering. This is where the council, chamber and pool weighed in to have it as close as possible so everyone passing through might see something and stop. Remember, this was the era when interstates were bypassing small towns and triggering their death.
I-70 was constructed as we now know it up to the No Name tunnels. Round one was lost. The irony, the saving grace of this action – the destruction of the west entrance to Glenwood Canyon, the cutting down of the hillside and filling of the river – mobilized a small group of locals who said there had to be a better way. The movement grew. The CDOH plans for Glenwood Canyon were shelved. A host of architects, planners, engineers, geologist and biologists were hired, and look what resulted: a beautiful highway in a restored canyon that develops tourism and multi-use to the economic benefit of this community.
Highway 82 divides Glenwood. It cuts us down the middle. Traffic, accidents, deaths, pollution, sirens and a dying commercial core are the results of inaction – City Council inaction. Years ago we started calling the possible solution a “bypass.” (Dick is right. We screwed up the terminology.) “Bypass” was code for allowing the bad traffic around town and keeping the good traffic shopping. I saw “bypass” as shooting ourselves in the foot. Highway 82 would stay on Grand and Glenwood would be the only one paying for a new road. This has come to pass.
The Glenwood Canyon solution was visionary. The Glenwood town solution can be as well. For sure, opportunities have been lost and things are more expensive. But if we revisit our community goals and priorities, drop the term “bypass,” bring in state, county and federal funds, then we can solve this one too. To the benefit of everyone. Please, present City Council, look ahead, be visionary, respond positively to CDOT’s request concerning a Red Canyon interchange designed for a new bridge.
Dean K. Moffatt
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