New Emerald Park access could open this summer in Steamboat | SteamboatToday.com

New Emerald Park access could open this summer in Steamboat

This graphic shows the planned construction areas associated with the new Emerald Park access.

STEAMBOAT SPRINGS — A much-anticipated new entrance into Emerald Park could be open as soon as early summer.

City of Steamboat Springs engineer Ben Beall said Union Pacific Railroad crews have installed the new signals and gates at what will be a new railroad crossing just south of the Hampton Inn.

The project is still on its original schedule.

But the city is waiting for the railroad to install the new concrete crossing platforms before the new access can be opened.

"The new access should be open sometime in the early summer, with the caveat that we still have some pending work that the city doesn't have control over," Beall said.

The new access into Emerald Park will replace the current one that crosses the railroad at Trafalgar Lane.

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The old Trafalgar crossing will be open only to pedestrians and cyclists.

When it's open, the new access will spare Pamela Lane residents from the traffic they've endured for years as drivers take children to soccer games or visit the Yampa River Botanic Park.

The work that is underway right now is almost two decades in the making.

The project saw a breakthrough in 2015, when Union Pacific told the city it would not oppose the city's application for a new railroad crossing.

Drivers will see some work on U.S. Highway 40 just south of the Trafalgar intersection while crews do median work associated with the new entrance.

To reach Scott Franz, call 970-871-4210, email scottfranz@SteamboatToday.com or follow him on Twitter @ScottFranz10.