Same traffic issues will exist after bridge “improvements” | AspenTimes.com

Same traffic issues will exist after bridge “improvements”

“It is a popular delusion that the government wastes vast amounts of money through inefficiency and sloth. Enormous effort and elaborate planning are required to waste this much money.”-P. J. O’Rourke

Ms. Carroll hit the nail on the proverbial head in her latest column with regards to the Castle Creek Bridge construction (Aspen Times, April 4). For reasons unclear the city of Aspen is spending $4.65 million to create a pedestrian/bicycle dedicated path on a bridge that was built in 1961. A bridge that CDOT rates at a 62 (fair). A bridge they also say is “functionally obsolete,” too narrow (now!), and nearing the end of its life, maybe 20 more years.

As a (former) advocate for a “straight shot” which may never happen I have no workable solutions that the people of Aspen will support. Although a solution was built in Glenwood Springs which Ms. Carroll mentions is a mere 40 miles from her home with plenty of notice. Glenwood built a new wider bridge with a “separate” pedestrian/bike bridge. There were 2 months of inconvenience, but that was in exchange for a real solution to an actual problem including replacing a failing bridge. Conversely Aspen’s bridge closure and accompanying traffic woes solves nothing. The same traffic issues will exist after the “improvements” with 5 million dollars wasted on an old bridge.

One Councilman, as quoted in this paper, said move to “Vail if you want a straight shot or take the bus if you hate traffic.” Which is easy to say if you live in Aspen, but not that helpful if you have to work in Aspen. And while he is correct there is no political will to build a straight shot that may change when the Castle Creek Bridge fails the Entrance issue will be forced upon future residents and their leaders who spent 4.65 million dollars for nothing in 2018.

I heard from a colleague who lives in the West End that traffic is backed up both directions to the Airport and from town his neighborhood is a mess. And this economic loss and personal sacrifice solves what?

Anthony F. Hershey

Glenwood Springs


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