Get ready: Officials announce timing of road closures for Central Park Drive reconstruction
March 25, 2016
Steamboat Springs — Extra planning and patience will soon be required during shopping trips to Central Park Plaza.
Flashing signs are already warning drivers about a major road construction project that will begin April 4 in front of one of the city’s busiest commercial centers on Central Park Drive between Mount Werner and Pine Grove roads.
Officials from Connell Resources and the city of Steamboat Springs held an open house Thursday to talk with residents and business owners about the impact of the work.
Following is a survival guide for the project, which will reconstruct the roadway and install a roundabout, new crosswalks, sidewalks and bike lanes.
How long will the project last?
As always, the schedule is dependent upon the weather. The city expects the project will run from April 4 to July 12.
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Construction will be done in three phases, with work moving in a linear fashion down the roadway.
Pedestrians and drivers will be able to access all Central Park Plaza businesses during construction, although they could see some traffic delays during peak hours due to lane and road closures.
Tyson Waneka, project superintendent from Connell Resources, said some patience will be required during the project, but the end result will be worth the wait.
“They’ll like it when we’re done,” he said of a new Central Park Drive.
What should I expect in terms of lane closures?
• April 4 to April 24 (preliminary work)
Drivers turning onto Central Park from Pine Grove Road will see a right-hand lane closure that will run to the first entrance of the shopping center. Crews will be working here to remove curb and gutter. The more impactful work begins April 24.
• April 24 to May 26 (Phase I)
Central Park Drive will be under a full closure from its intersection with Pine Grove Road to the entrance near Anytime Fitness.
Drivers will need to access the shopping center via Snapdragon Way, or, if they want a less bumpy ride, Mount Werner Road. When the road reopens, it will include the new roundabout, sidewalks, bike lanes and other improvements.
• May 26-June 28 (Phase II)
The full road closure shifts to the area of Central Park Drive that runs from Mount Werner Road to the entrance at Anytime Fitness. Access will be open via Pine Grove Road.
• June 28-July 12 (Phase III)
The final phase of the work will see traffic impacts shifted to Snapdragon Way. This road, which currently more closely resembles a moonscape than a road due to the numerous potholes, will be reconstructed and repaved during this portion of the project.
Fear not, Quesarito and Chalupa lovers. Access to Taco Bell/KFC will be maintained throughout the project.
Can I still ride the bus to the shopping center when the road is closed?
Yes. The bus stop will be shifted to Pine Grove Road during the closure, and pedestrian access will be maintained.
Why are we doing this?
City officials say the road needs a reboot to better accommodate the influx of pedestrians and vehicles it is beginning to see 30 years after its original construction. Today, Central Park Drive sees between 5,000 and 6,300 vehicles per day.
Officials say in recent years, the surface of the road has also begun to show signs of failure.
The city also has received complaints about the efficiency of the traffic signals and a lack of defined turning lanes.
The project will make it easier for bikers and pedestrians to navigate the area.
Currently, people who are dropped off at one of the busiest bus stops in the city are seen crossing in an area that doesn’t have a dedicated crosswalk. The project changes that.
What if I still have questions?
The contractor has set up an email system dedicated to project information.
The city has also set up a website about the project at steamboatsprings.net/centralparkdrive.