Buffalo Pass may be paved

Commissioners want feedback from community

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— Paving Buffalo Pass Road to Dry Lake Campground is one of the projects proposed by the Routt County Road and Bridge Department for next year.

A total of about $2.3 million in capital projects and infrastructure was listed on the department's budget request, part of which was presented to county commissioners earlier this week.

Paving the 3.5-mile section of Buffalo Pass Road (Routt County Road 38) would cost about $126,000. Before the double chip-and-seal project can be approved, Routt County commissioners said community feedback would be necessary, Road and Bridge Department Director Paul Draper said.

"It is not a done deal," Draper said. "(Commissioners) are looking for us to get some stakeholder support."

Such support would be important because the county received some negative feedback about paving C.R. 18 this summer, he said.

"There was input from citizens this year who did not want to see their roads surfaced," he said. The reasons given by those residents included that they thought road improvements would result in more and faster traffic, he said.

Draper said the project on Buffalo Pass was important, as the road is steep and windy, carries a significant amount of traffic and does not hold gravel well.

Because the road is within the air shed, or the area around the city of Steamboat Springs that is affected by vehicle pollution, and because this air shed has not met some federal pollution requirements in the past, the project would be eligible for federal funds.

Paving the road would mean improved public safety, Draper said.

Other road projects proposed for 2004 include about $500,000 in overlays, $258,000 in chip-and-seal, $323,000 in double chip-and-seal and $1.2 million in bridges. Much of the requested bridge funding would be devoted to the MacGregor Bridge that leads into the dump in Milner.

For 2003, county road improvements included $25,000 in paving, $757,000 in chip-and-seal, $377,000 in double chip-and-seal, $100,000 in reconstruction and $1 million in bridges.

On Sept. 9, county commissioners will consider a proposed budget for operations and heavy equipment, and motor pools, as well as a long-range fund balance forecasting.

A total of about $2.3 million in capital projects and infrastructure was listed on the department's budget request, part of which was presented to county commissioners earlier this week.

Paving the 3.5-mile section of Buffalo Pass Road (Routt County Road 38) would cost about $126,000. Before the double chip-and-seal project can be approved, Routt County commissioners said community feedback would be necessary, Road and Bridge Department Director Paul Draper said.

"It is not a done deal," Draper said. "(Commissioners) are looking for us to get some stakeholder support."

Such support would be important because the county received some negative feedback about paving C.R. 18 this summer, he said.

"There was input from citizens this year who did not want to see their roads surfaced," he said. The reasons given by those residents included that they thought road improvements would result in more and faster traffic, he said.

Draper said the project on Buffalo Pass was important, as the road is steep and windy, carries a significant amount of traffic and does not hold gravel well.

Because the road is within the air shed, or the area around the city of Steamboat Springs that is affected by vehicle pollution, and because this air shed has not met some federal pollution requirements in the past, the project would be eligible for federal funds.

Paving the road would mean improved public safety, Draper said.

Other road projects proposed for 2004 include about $500,000 in overlays, $258,000 in chip-and-seal, $323,000 in double chip-and-seal and $1.2 million in bridges. Much of the requested bridge funding would be devoted to the MacGregor Bridge that leads into the dump in Milner.

For 2003, county road improvements included $25,000 in paving, $757,000 in chip-and-seal, $377,000 in double chip-and-seal, $100,000 in reconstruction and $1 million in bridges.

On Sept. 9, county commissioners will consider a proposed budget for operations and heavy equipment, and motor pools, as well as a long-range fund balance forecasting.

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