Government Tracker: Minturn sidewalk plan coming together | VailDaily.com

Government Tracker: Minturn sidewalk plan coming together

Board: Minturn Town Council, evening meeting, Wednesday.

Present: Terry Armistead, Sidney Harrington, Harvey Craig, Sage Pierson, John Widerman, Earle Bidez and Mayor Matt Scherr.

Issue: Sidewalk project.

Who they talked to: Michelle Hansen, senior engineer for Stolfus & Associates Inc., of Denver.

What they talked about: Hansen presented the council with survey results, which included open houses, door-to-door visits, online surveys and fliers. The project includes three segments: Toledo to Cemetery Road; Cemetery Road to Boneyard open space; and Boneyard open space to Maloit Park. Options included combinations of sidewalk, bike and parking spots. Concerns with bike lanes were if they'd be used, as well as enforcing parking violations for those who park in the bike lanes. Concerns for parking spots included snow removal and safety, and concerns for sidewalks included the added space from which residents would be required to remove snow

How they voted: The council voted for 6-foot sidewalks on both sides of the road and parallel parking spots, citing the sidewalks as the most important part.

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What's next: The Colorado Department of Transportation resurfacing project is slated to start in the summer of 2018, and Hansen said it is ideal to get the sidewalk project done either before or in conjunction with that project to avoid any hiccups in design. Another grant the town is pursuing in September requires detailed priorities and plans of the project.

Issue: Holy Cross and Excel Energy substation.

Who they talked to: David Blakely, of Holy Cross Energy.

What they talked about: After council members had heard from residents of door-to-door surveying being done by the energy company, talking about 60-foot power lines through town, Blakely came before the council to put a face to the project. He said the company is looking to build a substation that would be a backup to the Gilman and Avon substations, which currently have no backups, something rare to see, Blakely said. The backup energy source would benefit Minturn, he said, if Gilman's substation were to ever go out. He said it's an expensive project, but worth it.

What's next: The energy companies are planning different options and routes, which are many in number, Blakely said.

Reporter Ross Leonhart can be reached at 970-748-2915 and rleonhart@vaildaily.com. Follow him on Instagram at colorado_livin_on_the_hill.