Commuters not the only ones facing road woes |

Commuters not the only ones facing road woes

Jeremy Heiman

Bicycle and foot traffic on the Airport Business Center trail will be moved onto detours by the end of the week, a highway engineer says.

Mike Ebling, project engineer on the ABC-to-Buttermilk project for the Colorado Department of Transportation, said bikers and runners will have to endure a bit of inconvenience for a few weeks.

The trail, which runs between Aspen and the Airport Business Center, will be moved off its present route to make room for construction of a four-lane highway along part of that stretch of highway. But a new trail should be ready in a matter of weeks.

“We’re hoping within three weeks to a month the new bike path will be constructed,” Ebling said. The new trail will have a concrete surface and will be 10 feet wide. About one mile of the existing trail will be replaced, he said.

The trail detours may include some stretches on the existing pavement of Highway 82, Ebling said. But he said some sections paved with fine gravel may be created, too. Though that surface won’t be ideal for road bikes, it should still be ridable, he said.

“We’d like to encourage all the bikers to use caution when they’re using the detours,” Ebling said.

During the ABC-to-Buttermilk four-lane project, a trail underpass will be constructed to connect the Business Center Trail with the Owl Creek Trail. But that won’t be done until later.

“I don’t anticipate that will be done until late fall,” Ebling said. The underpass must be done in two phases. The first phase will entail building a tunnel under the downvalley lanes and the second under the upvalley lanes.

A skylight between the lanes of motor vehicle traffic will illuminate the underpass when it’s completed.

Bicyclists and runners who use the High School Trail, the underpass at the Maroon Creek roundabout and other trails in that area will be experiencing some construction detours in the near future, too. The city of Aspen Parks Department will be releasing information on alternate routing in that area soon, said parks planner Kevin Dunnett.

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