Traffic very heavy in Jackson Hole

Allen Best

JACKSON HOLE, Wyo. – Jackson Hole is off the interstate highway system, which many people think makes resorts like Vail and Summit County less attractive and desirable. Just the same, Jackson Hole highways carry interstate-like traffic volumes – at least when compared with some lighter-used interstates of the West.State transportation officials reported that traffic on a local two-lane highway just outside of Jackson was only slightly less than that of the four-lane interstate passing through Rock Springs.While a state traffic engineer argues that highway expansion is needed to accommodate those who are already in Jackson Hole, a conservation leader argues that the Europeans don’t just keep building bigger roads. One of the county commissioners agrees. “There’s no reason why we have to do something the way it’s always been done,” said Larry Jorgenson. And a letter-writer likened widened roads to larger pants purchased to address a weight problem.The Jackson Hole News & Guide may have adopted the more middle-of-the-road position: “Jackson Hole residents harbor the illusion that they live in a rural community,” said the paper. “Heavy traffic, resulting form years of growth and development, challenges that illusion and brings reality into focus.”Humans use wildlife underpassBANFF, Alberta – The TransCanada Highway’s wildlife underpasses and overpasses around Banff area may be the most vivid effort to accommodate migrating animals in North America. But there’s another group of critters that have a hard time crossing the busy highway – people.To expedite their safe passage, bicycle riders, pedestrians, and horseback riders may be allowed use of one underpass, called the Cascade underpass. But wildlife researchers are none too happy about this plan. It is a “bone of contention, to put it politely,” one scientist, Davie Campbell, told the Rocky Mountain Outlook. He and other wildlife biologists prefer that bears, wolves and other animals have no competition, but will concede the one underpass as a vile necessity.Vail, Colorado

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