Forest Service releases final decision on Tepee Park Ranch Project near Rifle
After months of review, the White River National Forest said Monday it will move forward with the Tepee Park Ranch Project south of Rifle. The project will see construction of a new access road, Beaver Creek Bypass, continued commercial use of Upper Forest 824 and approval of the installation of 1.5 miles of underground pipelines during road construction.
The upper Beaver Creek Trailhead southwest of Rifle will be improved in the process.
Despite several objections, the selected alternative best supports the need for action and addresses the needs of CPX Piceance Holdings LLC, an oil and gas operator with permits for an existing above-ground natural gas pipeline, according to the press release.
Prior to the final decision, the Forest Service received five objections. An objection meeting was held between the objectors and the Forest Service, and each was addressed, states the press release.
The deputy regional forester found no violation of law, regulation or policy.
Additionally, the selected alternative meets the needs of CPX’s proposal and meets all required federal law and regulations to provide access and multiple use of national forest lands.
“We are required to provide access for reasonable use of private inholdings,” Rifle District Ranger Sarah Hankens said. “The selected alternative balances access to private property while also providing for continued public access to the forest, including expanding parking to better accommodate horse trailers and personal vehicles during summer use and a winter parking area. Additionally, the authorized pipelines will be installed within the road corridor, minimizing disturbance to area resources, and improving setback distance from Beaver Creek.”
The project can be implemented immediately.
For more information, visit the project page at http://www.fs.usda.gov/project/?project=49924.