Tunnel 82 from Red Canyon to No Name | PostIndependent.com

Tunnel 82 from Red Canyon to No Name

Fred Stewart

Dear Editor,

I wonder if any fewer people will go to downtown Boston since “The Big Dig”?

The project recently reclaimed old freeway arteries for the living. Contractors and engineers sunk an eight-lane traffic tube below the site of the Boston Tea Party. The cost for this quarter mile was equivalent to the total cost of the Glenwood Canyon Project. The site can still be enjoyed without a hint of the “rat race” below the water.

Not everyone values their collective quality of life as do those in Boston. Certainly this move is unprecedented, and should serve as a model of what can be done. The quality of living that this project brings is priceless.

I don’t know what the “critical mass” of realization, intolerance, or whatever it was, that spurred Bostonians, but it happened, and everyone is better off for it.

We all know that in any project, someone is impacted. Mitigation was a quarter of “The Big Dig’s” cost. The idea is to minimize mitigation and increase production with a result that gives people back their commerce and living space. It returns all to “first causes.”

And so what is Glenwood’s “critical mass” of realization? When will it happen? We are so lucky we don’t have traffic the scale of Boston. We are as confined as Boston, in that we have mountains where they have sea. Mountains are to our advantage, in so far as they can serve as conduits; conduits must be man-made to keep the sea out.

Glenwood can set on her destiny forever. The mountains will wait. Generations may come and go. All may huddle within an ever increasingly crowded valley indefinitely, while the quality of life and the people it attracts diminishes. The people who will come won’t see the obvious shortcomings; they will come because they can eek out a piece of Colorado.

It can be better. This is our call. It is 3.6 miles of rock and about 6,000 feet of elevation at each end where interchanges would meet existing roads. It would impact no one in town. Near one end, I know Bob and Caroline Cordova who have a business, and near the other end I know June Woods has a home. These are examples of accommodation and mitigation for a tunnel between Red Canyon and the No Name interchange.

Ask about a single bore. Ask about logistics. Ask about economic impact. Ask about traffic patterns. Ask about yourselves and your family. Ask about cost.

A single bore could be one-way traffic to correspond with commuter flow. It could be privatized and tolls could be collected. It could be excavated from the canyon side and all waste could be hoppered and loaded onto rail traffic. If you think that your quality of living and your business wouldn’t improve, then you are in a town too far west.

Fred Stewart

Glenwood Springs

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