Highway 82 priorities
June 6, 2002
Recent announcements place the “Entrance to Aspen” Highway 82 project at number-one priority for future funding in the Roaring Fork Valley. This is apparently a reward for the area that has fought against any realistic highway improvement project for the past 32 years. This is also the area that coerced CDOT and the Federal Highway Administration into accepting a ridiculous proposition which includes a tunnel section costing millions to construct and saddling taxpayers with high maintenance and operation costs forever. And all for a two-lane highway.
Currently nearly all the traffic heading up the valley from I-70 must travel up Grand Avenue through Glenwood Springs. This is not only Aspen-bound traffic, but destinations including Carbondale, Basalt, El Jebel, Snowmass, and points between. Many trucks are hauling loads of hazardous material.
Once current construction in Snowmass Canyon is complete, only two short sections of Highway 82 will be unimproved. The 10,000 feet through Glenwood Springs certainly needs attention before the two-mile entrance to Aspen.