County, Carbondale agree to provide a new trail link
January 11, 2018
Garfield County commissioners have agreed to build a sidewalk along a section of county road in Carbondale in exchange for the town agreeing to maintain the roadway once the improvements are made.
The county and the town entered into an intergovernmental agreement this week, in which the county will pay for a sidewalk along a stretch of Snowmass Drive that is located outside town limits. The town will assume all future maintenance of the entire road, according to the agreement.
The northernmost section of Snowmass Drive is still technically a county road. It will be annexed into the town following the joint improvement project.
In addition, the deal also has Carbondale agreeing to take over winter maintenance of White Hill Road, which leads to the St. Mary of the Crown church and the town's historic cemetery.
Year-round maintenance of the far east end of Sopris Drive, which has also been outside town limits, will also fall to the town.
The agreement will take a load off of the county's Road and Bridge Department, Commissioner Tom Jankovsky said.
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"I see the benefits," he said in a county news release announcing the agreement. "This will really help out connections in that neighborhood," added Commissioner John Martin.
Carbondale is designing the path and a retaining wall along Snowmass Drive and will oversee its construction. Garfield County is covering the cost of the improvements.
"This pathway will fill a gap in Carbondale's bike and pedestrian network that has been identified as a top priority for more than a decade," Carbondale Trustee Ben Bohmfalk said. "This was made possible by the combined support of the county, the town, and some strong advocacy from students at Crystal River Elementary School."
Garfield County Manager Kevin Batchelder said the proposed trail will also help connect the Crystal River Trail and local schools with the nearby Rio Grande Trail.
The agreement was approved unanimously by the commissioners.