Thursday, February 25, 2010
Steamboat Springs Colorado Department of Transportation engineers, Steamboat Springs public works officials and police officers inspected four major intersections on U.S. Highway 40 on Wednesday and found several spots for potential improvement.
The team inspected the intersections at Walton Creek Road, Pine Grove Road, Hilltop Parkway and Anglers Drive.
City Public Works Director Philo Shelton called for the inspection after Steamboat resident William “Rick” Hagberg, 51, was struck as he walked across the Walton Creek Road intersection Feb. 5. Hagberg was taken by air ambulance to Denver in critical condition. His status has since been upgraded to “good,” according to a Denver Health spokesman Wednesday. Driver Nancy Graves, a Routt County resident, was arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence of alcohol and vehicular assault.
Shelton said Wednesday that the team found several items to change or improve at the intersections but nothing that clearly affected that crash. He said the pedestrian signal was working properly.
“I think there were a lot of other factors involved in the accident, so I don’t know,” he said. “The signal there was working, as far as the crosswalk piece.”
The team did, however, find places it would like to improve intersection lighting, crosswalk signs, handicap accessibility and signage.
For example, at the Pine Grove Road intersection, they noted that the countdown timer on the crosswalk was not working properly, showing at some times, but not others.
Dave Schneider, CDOT resident engineer for Northwest Colorado, said the study was an overall look at the intersections and that the team was not looking for one particular problem.
Most of the changes will be made through CDOT, but there is no timeline or guarantee that the changes will happen soon.
“I don’t know what’s going to come out of it; I don’t have a clue … if anything does come out of it,” Schneider said. “It all depends on money and manpower and equipment and availability.”
The review focused on the intersections on the east side of town because of the crash and because many of the crosswalks in downtown Steamboat will be updated as the U.S. 40 reconstruction project resumes in the spring.
Shelton said the city would make some changes without CDOT, including adding signs at the Walton Creek Road intersection to point out the underpass available on the Yampa River Core Trail.
No more reviews are planned, but technicians likely will come out to make the reviews when they are available, Shelton said.
— To reach Zach Fridell, call 871-4208 or e-mail email@example.com