Basalt faces major road closure
BASALT Midvalley commuters will have to adapt to a major disruption in traffic patterns during a two-week closure of one of the arteries into Basalt later this month.A two-mile stretch of Two Rivers Road will be closed on the downvalley side of the town core between July 30 and Aug. 12, the town government announced Monday. Traffic will be reduced to one lane for an additional five to six weeks.The closure is required because the Colorado Division of Wildlife is rebuilding its dam at Lake Christine. The lake is in the high ground above Two Rivers Road, about 1/4 mile west of Basalt.A contractor for the wildlife division is draining the lake so it can be dredged, expanded, refilled and restocked with trout. The dam also will be rehabilitated.As part of that work, a new spillway will be built downvalley from the current out-take pipe – a culvert visible from the road. Construction of the spillway will require cutting across Two Rivers Road for placement of a new culvert in a new area, Basalt Town Manager Bill Efting said.During the two-week closure, cars will be forced to use the main Basalt entrance off Highway 82 – the one with the roundabout – or the entrance closer to Elk Run subdivision. Roaring Fork Transportation Authority passengers must use the bus stops on Highway 82 at the park-and-ride and in front of The Basalt Store. The bus stops in front of the Basalt library will be closed during the road closure.RFTA’s Aspen Junction bus stops also will be temporarily located on Highway 82.The wildlife division’s contractor originally wanted to close the road for 10 to 12 weeks, according to Efting. “The town of Basalt said we can’t do that,” he said.The town is contributing $50,000 to the project; the funds will help with traffic control to get one lane reopened by Aug. 13. The good news, Efting said, is that the closure will be finished by the time school begins.”We’re taking it very seriously that we’re disrupting people and their daily routines,” Efting said.He advised commuters to park at the Midland Addition property next to the Basalt Post Office and walk to and from the bus stops.”The main message is we’re not trying to discourage people from using mass transit,” he said.Scott Condon’s e-mail address is email@example.com
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