New trail construction could begin this year
Post Independent Staff
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado
GLENWOOD SPRINGS ” About 60 people showed up Monday night to view the city’s plans for a concrete trail to the southern part of town along the Roaring Fork River.
“The next step is to incorporate the comments that we garnered last night and then continue on with our design work,” said Andrew McGregor, Glenwood’s community development director.
The planned segment of trail stretches from 27th Street south to near the Mountain Market and Three-Mile Creek. It would run between the river and Hager Lane. Construction could begin later this year and would be phased over a few years, McGregor said.
The city presented designs for the trail at the Community Center Monday night.
Building the trail would create a safe pedestrian and nonmotorized route to the southern part of town, where there’s a large and growing population, McGregor said.
A group of Hager Lane residents say building the concrete bike and pedestrian trail between their homes and the Roaring Fork River would harm wildlife habitat, invade their privacy and result in problems such as littering and vagrancy.
“On Hager Lane, we don’t have anybody that’s for it,” said Hager Lane resident Mike Gettinger. “People are up in arms because the trail is so close to the homes. One of the guys is so close you could literally hand off a beer or a soda to someone on the path.”
But supporters of the trail say it was planned decades ago with voter-approved funding. Hager Lane residents live in homes built afterward under zoning obtained with the condition of a trail easement being granted to the city, supporters say.
The city doesn’t have easements for portions of the trail. In April 2007, the City Council approved building the section of trail and gave city staff the option to pursue condemnation to acquire property if necessary.
“Condemnation is a big issue,” Gettinger said. “That really rankled some people. It’s what America doesn’t stand for when the government comes in and takes your land.”
McGregor said, “We’re continuing to work with property owners to acquire easements. We’d like to think that we won’t have to go the eminent domain route.”
Contact Pete Fowler: 384-9121
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