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8 Westside projects on region's six-year draft transportation list; public can comment

      
The shoulders on 30th Street would be widened between Fontanero Street and Mesa Road, in part to make room for bicycles, as one of the Westside projects on the draft 2017-22 Transportation Improvement Plan (TIP). Photo looks north, with the Garden of the Gods to the left of the road.
Westside Pioneer file photo
Through May 13, public comments are being taken by the Pikes Peak Area Council of Governments (PPACG) on the draft 2017-22 Transportation Improvement Program (TIP).
       To see the 62-page document, which includes eight Westside projects among roughly 100 in El Paso, Park and Teller counties, go to ppacg.org and click on “Comment on new TIP.” The PPACG, the federally recognized metropolitan planning organization for the three-county region, can also be reached at 471-7080 x139.
       Developed with input from various government entities and citizen committees, the draft TIP identifies prioritized projects from the 2040 Regional Transportation Plan, which the PPACG board adopted in 2015 and amended last year. The draft TIP is “fiscally constrained,” meaning total annual project costs do not exceed anticipated revenues, a press release states.
       "After a TIP is adopted, it can be - and generally is - amended several times a year, based on funding availability, a change in project scope or unanticipated needs,” the release adds.
       The Westside projects listed in the draft TIP are the Cimarron/I-25 interchange replacement (under way), the Fillmore/I-25 interchange replacement (under way), an improved left turn lane for westbound Highway 24 at 21st Street, improvements to Highway 24 between Eighth Street and Manitou, improvements to 30th Street from Fontanero Street to Mesa Road, replacement of the Golden Lane bridge (located south of Colorado Avenue near 31st Street), and improvements at Highway 24 and 31st Street.
       The TIP also includes estimated costs for each project, but some are listed under multiple funding categories, making exact numbers elusive, and the costs inevitably change over time, anyway.
       Ten projects that had been on the old TIP are to be removed for the time being. Two of those are on the Westside: a rehabilitation of the 26th Street bridge over Fountain Creek and a rehabilitation of the Garden of the Gods Road bridge over South Douglas Creek.

Westside Pioneer/press release
(Posted 4/28/16; Transportation: General)

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