Editor:

I was happy to hear that the Colorado Department of Transportation is now having a conversation with the city of Glenwood Springs on the change of use for the 8th Street and Midland Avenue property.

When I was a city council member and a member of the Transportation Commission in 2000 the city and CDOT partnered in three studies required by CDOT to prove that a relocation of Highway 82 off Grand Avenue is needed. Both CDOT and the city invested a lot of money and time into these studies. The conclusion was that by the year 2030 if nothing was done to change the traffic flow on Grand Avenue there would be gridlock. 

I argue that we will reach this gridlock in the next few years. Unfortunately, even after the city bought property along the river (with loans from CDOT) for immediate needs to relocate Highway 82 a decision was made to replace the old bridge and forget the relocation. The intersection at 8th and Midland was an important part of any future decisions in reducing traffic congestion in the future. 

CDOT and the city formed a partnership in 2005 in condemning the then-Collins property, now the 8th and Midland property, for future highway improvements. This intersection has safety concerns because of heavy pedestrian use and traffic; it is a major utility corridor.

I’m not objecting to affordable housing, but I am opposed to the city changing the use of this property for the reasons mentioned above.

Don “Hooner” Gillespie

Glenwood Springs