Glenwood’s 27th St. bridge project gets $500K |

Glenwood’s 27th St. bridge project gets $500K

This photo illustration from the South Bridge project environmental assessment shows the planned route from Airport Road, upper left, underneath the airport runway, across the Roaring Fork River and to a new grade-separated interchange at Colorado 82.

Glenwood Springs’ plans to replace the 27th Street bridge after the new Grand Avenue bridge is completed got a big boost from the Garfield County Federal Mineral Lease District this week.

A $500,000 award toward the project to replace the bridge was the top grant in the fall FMLD cycle out of more than $1.3 million worth of grants announced Wednesday.

The grants are derived from money received for leasing of federal lands in Garfield County for oil and gas and mineral extraction. Awards are made each spring and fall to support area government and school district projects.

The city of Glenwood Springs is moving forward with a final design for the estimated $8.8 million new bridge and associated improvements to the intersection at 27th Street and South Grand Avenue.

Commonly known as the Sunlight Bridge, the bridge provides access over the Roaring Fork River between Midland Avenue and Grand Avenue, serving approximately 3,500 city and county residents.

It is also being paid for in part through federal bridge replacement money, after the structure was deemed structurally deficient and functionally obsolete in recent inspections, earning a deficiency rating lower than the old Grand Avenue bridge.

“The replacement of the 27th Street bridge is of critical importance to our city, especially for those residents living along the South Midland corridor,” Mayor Mike Gamba said in a statement. “The bridge planning process has been a comprehensive and cooperative effort involving many stakeholders.”

The bridge is to be built using an off-line accelerated construction method that will limit full closure of the critical link to about one week. A start date for the bridge replacement has not been determined.

Other awards in the traditional FMLD grant program include: $173,000 for a Silt irrigation water tank replacement; $150,000 for a 336-kilowatt solar PV array at the Roaring Fork School District’s new Riverview School; $120,750 for the New Castle Community Sports Park project; $79,200 for the Rifle Police Department to buy mobile data terminals; and $66,794 for compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act and new locker rooms in Garfield County District Re-2 schools.

The award for the Riverview School solar project is in addition to a $100,000 grant from the Community Office for Resource Efficiency.

The solar array is expected to offset 100 percent of the electricity costs for the new preK-8 school.

Garfield FMLD also awarded nine mini grants of $25,000 each to: Carbondale & Rural Fire Protection District for emergency communications equipment; Sopris Park and Bonnie Fischer Park improvements in Carbondale; Garfield County Emergency Communications Authority vehicle purchase and radio technician; Garfield County Public Library District for public access to new laptop computers; Garfield School District 16 playground resurfacing; New Castle Community Center improvements; Parachute Rest Area plaza remodel; variable message boards in Rifle; and a new dump truck for Silt.

The spring 2018 FMLD grant cycle will begin in February, with award announcements anticipated in April.

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