Hayden takes a big step toward downtown improvement this summer | SteamboatToday.com

Hayden takes a big step toward downtown improvement this summer

Hayden is moving forward with construction on a project to extend sidewalks along U.S. Highway 40 through much of the town.
John F. Russell/Steamboat Pilot & Today

Hayden will move forward with the first phase of construction on a long talked about project that will eventually extend the sidewalks along U.S. Highway 40 through most of the town.

Approved Thursday, March 2, the first phase of the project will cost a little over $1.7 million and calls for sidewalks on the north side of the road. Additions include a section from Shelton Lane to Pine Street on the east side of Hayden and from Sixth Street to Eighth Street on the west side of town.

Hayden Public Works Director Bryan Richards said the town has been working to find grant funding for the project for years and has been awarded funding from a few different programs since 2020.

“I believe our first grant was in 2020, and then we’ve just been chasing after the funding,” Richards said. “(We’re) still searching for more money to make sure we get the whole project done with those grants.”

The town is putting some money toward the project, as some of the grants require a 20% match. Still, Richards said Hayden was able to use some grant funding for that match, limiting how much the town will need to contribute toward the project. Richards said the town is still narrowing down exactly what contribution it will need to make.

“We’ve received several grants — multi-modal option funds, safe routes to schools, revitalizing main street,” Richards said. “That money allowed us to design the sidewalk, pay for (phase one of) construction on the sidewalk and then also construction management.”

Richards said the project should significantly increase pedestrian safety in Hayden, where many people opt to walk along the shoulder of the road after the sidewalks in the town’s core end.

“Ultimately, we want to get people to quit walking on the shoulders of the highway because we do have a lot of people that currently do that, and it’s a pretty big safety risk for pedestrians as well as vehicles,” Richards said.

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Phase two the of the project would add sidewalks along the same stretches on the south side of U.S. 40 — referred to as West Jefferson Avenue in Hayden — after the town finds more funding.

The contract approved last week is with Montrose-based K & K Concrete, which just completed work on a $2.4 million terminal expansion of the Montrose Regional Airport.

Hayden Town Council also approved a deal with Denver-based Yeh and Associates for construction management on the project, a group that has worked on several projects in Steamboat Springs, including roundabouts near the base of Steamboat Resort and sidewalks along U.S. 40.

Construction could start as soon as weather allows this spring and be completed by October. Richards said there likely would be impacts to traffic in town through the summer.

“There probably will be some impacts to traffic through town, and we just ask that people that live in the town of Hayden and also people that travel through Hayden as part of their commute just be mindful of construction workers and make sure they’re reducing their speed,” Richards said. “It is anticipated that they’re going to be completely done by the end of October.”

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