City to seek grant for West Midland trail connection
Glenwood Springs City Council last week gave priority to a West Glenwood foot trail connection to submit as its Garfield County Federal Mineral Lease District spring grant application.
The proposed new pathway would extend from an existing paved trail that ends at the west end of the Glenwood Meadows development by Lowe’s along Midland Avenue to the Interstate 70 Exit 114 area, where it would go under I-70.
In addition to providing a pedestrian connection between the Meadows and the Glenwood Springs Mall and residential neighborhoods north of I-70, it would allow for safer access for students going to and from Glenwood Springs Middle School, City Engineer Terri Partch advised Council at its Feb. 5 meeting.
The new trail link will be helpful as the city prepares for the impacts from the Grand Avenue bridge replacement and particularly the bridge closure period in spring 2017, she said.
“Offering a better pedestrian connection here will help to mitigate congestion and frustration from the overall (bridge) project and from the closure,” Partch said in a memo to council members.
The West Midland project was selected for the FMLD grant application over another trail connection from the Devereux Road pedestrian bridge that crosses I-70 at Two Rivers Park to Centennial Street, where the new Iron Mountain Hot Springs is under construction.
Both projects remain on the city’s list of future capital projects, regardless of whether the grant is obtained. Each of the trail links is estimated to cost around $700,000 for design and construction, Partch said.
The city will likely ask for $400,000 in FMLD funding to complete the West Midland trail, and would provide $150,000 in matching funds.
Partch also said that Garfield FMLD officials have recommended that the city wait to seek grant funding for another major project that was denied for a grant last fall, the South Midland Avenue reconstruction.
The city had asked for $1 million from the FMLD grant program to rebuild the section of Midland from 27th Street to Four Mile Road. For this year, the city has budgeted money to continue to do the preliminary engineering work for that project.
Until the city has a “shovel-ready” project, grant officials have recommended that the city hold off in asking again for FMLD money, Partch said.
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The Glenwood Springs Chamber Resort Association is working with local businesses and organizations to celebrate the spirit of Strawberry Days with a Berry Special Weekend from June 18-20, according to a news release.