The public's last chance to comment on a plan that will guide future access to U.S. Highway 40 is tonight. In their second public open house, consultants from Stolfus & Associates will present a draft of their West Steamboat Springs U.S. 40 Access Plan.

Photo by Brian Ray

The public's last chance to comment on a plan that will guide future access to U.S. Highway 40 is tonight. In their second public open house, consultants from Stolfus & Associates will present a draft of their West Steamboat Springs U.S. 40 Access Plan.

Traffic plan input sought

Plan that will guide U.S. 40 access enters final stages

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Past Event

U.S. 40 Access Management Plan open house

  • Thursday, January 31, 2008, 4 p.m. to 7 p.m.
  • Centennial Hall, 124 10th St., Steamboat Springs
  • Not available / Free

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— The public's last chance to comment on a plan that will guide future access to U.S. Highway 40 is tonight.

In their second public open house, consultants from Stolfus & Associates will present a draft of their West Steamboat Springs U.S. 40 Access Plan. Engineering consultant Michelle Hansen said tonight's feedback will be incorporated into a final plan.

In its draft form, the access plan recommends several techniques for improving travel on U.S. 40, such as eliminating some of the current accesses to the highway and removing turning vehicles from through traffic lanes. Hansen said the access plan would help the city in future efforts to seek approval and funding from the Colorado Department of Transportation for improvements on U.S. 40.

Diane Mitsch Bush is a Routt County commissioner and a member of CDOT's northwest transportation planning region. While the city's plan involves land mostly within city limits, Mitsch Bush said it is of great interest to the county as well.

"Certainly I think access management plans are very useful, particularly as we grow," Mitsch Bush said. "It's really important to have a plan, and it's really important, as the city is doing, to have public involvement."

The access plan deals strictly with U.S. 40 from 13th Street to just west of the Steamboat II subdivision in Routt County. Hansen said some members of the public have raised concerns about how many traffic signals the plan might call for in that stretch. Hansen said traffic signals would only be possible at locations where the plan calls for "full-movement intersections," meaning motorists approaching the intersection from any direction could turn in any direction.

The draft plan calls for about 20 such intersections, but Hansen noted that doesn't mean all of them will see a traffic signal. Operational controls would only be added when traffic volume called for it and might be achieved through a roundabout or interchange rather than a traffic signal.

"That would be determined as the intersection was improved and the access management plan was implemented," Hansen said.

Business owners have also expressed concerns about the draft plan's calls for the elimination of dozens of the direct accesses to U.S. 40 that currently exist. While understanding such concerns, Mitsch Bush said the better traffic flow would ultimately be beneficial to businesses.

"There will still be access, it just won't be at as many points," she said.

"Access management has proved to provide some safe, easy accesses for different businesses," Hansen added.

The access management process is occurring parallel to several other transportation-related discussions. The city also is engaged in a capacity study looking at the potential widening of U.S. 40 west of 13th Street and has contracted with a consultant to look at enhancing downtown streetscapes. There are ever-lingering calls for a Steamboat bypass to relieve downtown congestion. And at the state level, Gov. Bill Ritter on Wednesday released the final report of his Blue Ribbon Transportation Panel, which calls for a bigger statewide investment in transportation.

Comments

thecondoguy1 6 years, 7 months ago

I still like the bike lane down the middle of Lincoln Ave. thru downtown idea, gimmie a few Fat Tires at the OTP and I would ride that back and forth all afternoon, no problem............

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corduroy 6 years, 7 months ago

I think bike lanes in the middle of roads will just get more people hit. It can be pretty confusing and honestly, as a biker, I feel way safer on the right hand side than in the middle of traffic. I've never had a problem moving into the center turn lane to turn left on a bike

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thecondoguy1 6 years, 7 months ago

cord, I think you may have a the better idea there, I was thinking if everybody was drunk enough riding down the middle of Lincoln, they wouldn't feel it so much when they got ran over by one of those log trucks. I think council should have hired you to do that assessment of downtown, I'll bet you would have done it for less money too................

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snowysteamboat 6 years, 7 months ago

yo condoguy.

check your facts. Nobody ever proposed a bike lane down the middle of Lincoln.

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thecondoguy1 6 years, 7 months ago

good eye snowy, that was Yampa street, still takes a good slug of Fat Tires to ride down the middle of that as well, better to be hit by a 12 year old 4 runner than a logging truck though.........

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corduroy 6 years, 7 months ago

still, a bikeway on yampa st.. which is RIGHT NEXT to the core trail?? that's the dumbest waste of money ever

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steamboatsconscience 6 years, 7 months ago

cord since when has this city been afraid to waste money?

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we_re_all_suckers 6 years, 7 months ago

LOL - the city definitely is NOT afraid to waste taxpayer money-or to spend it for the benefit of the few vs. for the benefit of the many. For the city and the outside consultants to use traffic concerns as a ruse to build the "Victory Highway" to access the 700 is downright irresponsible fiscal favoritism. The highway goes from nowhere, to nowhere with a stop at the 700 in between, then will merge back onto hiway 40, eventually. 2000 more families converging into an almost overwhelming traffic jam, morning - and evening, will be lots of fun won't it. Give the 700's access thru the Brown property which they bought. 2 accesses a problem? It's not for Steamboat II, Heritage Park, Sleepy Bear, Silver Spur and others. I guess you could say Silver Spur has two - but I don't imagine many people going out four mile road to Saddle Mountain to access HiWay 40!, it seems more in the masterplan for travel(plus common sense), that they would go the short distance to the hiway from their subdivision and enter hiway 40 from the East of Steamboat II. What nobody is willing to face is the plain and simple fact that to relieve congestion, A DOWNTOWN BYPASS IS MANDATORY!! I'll even show them how for a modest consultation fee. LOL Oh - that's right - I live here, we NEED outside consultants!?!?!

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we_re_all_suckers 6 years, 7 months ago

Oh - I forgot - the 700's from Vegas, oughta use county rd 44 on the north end of the Riparian property they bought as the secondary access. They go almost to it, and it wouldn't displace businesses nor would it come out in a commercial zone, leading, as always back to HiWay 40. I think the city is trying to help the develpers out of the predicament of the 700's having bought a "pig in a poke" lol

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