Montrose, CO — The 2023 Moving Montrose Forward (MoveMo) campaign has a long list of goals to complete this year with $16 million in new projects planned including a record $4.3 million in street maintenance.
Each year the City of Montrose invests millions into public infrastructure improvements. These improvements include roadway and pedestrian trail construction to expand the city's transportation network, routine maintenance of existing roadways, and improvements to city water and sewer utilities.
"As we continue to see growth in our community we are working to utilize our available resources as efficiently as possible to ensure reliable utility service and are working to maintain a high level of safety and convenience for our pedestrians and motorists," City Engineer Scott Murphy said.
See a full list of 2023’s major capital projects on the MoveMo webpage.
2023 Contracted Street Maintenance Project
Each year the city hires contractors to perform a wide range of street maintenance work. This year, these contractors will be busy with surface treatments consisting of slurry and cape seals as well as more robust pavement maintenance activities such as complete rebuilds and overlays.
Slurry seals are a combination of a fine aggregate and an asphaltic binder that work to smooth out surface irregularities and protect the roadway from water intrusion and UV degradation. Slurry seals are used in lieu of chip seals within residential neighborhoods given the public’s general dislike of chip seals and a chip seal’s lower effectiveness in areas without high traffic volumes to press in the chips. Cape seals are used on higher-volume roadways or those with heavier degradation and include a chip seal first, followed by a slurry seal several weeks later.
Rebuilds are used when the existing pavement has deteriorated to a level that is cost-prohibitive to repair and requires removal and replacement of the existing pavement. Rebuild sections will often include the repair or replacement of damaged concrete. In some instances, rebuilds will also include the installation of new sidewalks and ADA curb ramps, where appropriate. Overlays are limited to areas where the pavement and adjacent concrete may be showing signs of fatigue but are still maintainable. Overlays typically include milling the existing pavement surface to accommodate a new layer of asphalt and remove any surface irregularities.
2023 Capital Projects
Contractors have started construction of the 6700 Extension project, which will connect the missing link between Miami and Sunnyside Roads as a minor arterial roadway. The project design includes through lanes in each direction, a center turn lane, bike lanes in each direction, and detached sidewalks on each side. This is the same template as that constructed on the South Hillcrest Extension in 2018 and the East Oak Grove widening in 2014.
Meanwhile, on the southern edge of the city, a new traffic signal is being installed on U.S. Hwy 550 at the intersection of Chipeta Road in order to increase safety and efficiency.
In 2019, CDOT completed an access control plan for this reach of Highway 550 that included plans for the eventual signalization of its intersection with Chipeta Road once volume thresholds (warrants) were met. A traffic impact study completed in 2020 indicated the signal volume warrants were now met, which allowed the project to move forward in collaboration with CDOT.
In response to the need, Montrose County and the City of Montrose entered into an intergovernmental agreement (IGA) to design and construct a traffic signal at the intersection. Through this IGA, the cost for the design and construction of the signal is being split 60% county and 40% city, based on their proportionate share of traffic contributing to the intersection.
Due to its age and the need to make major renovations and improvements, the city is working to move City Hall operations from 433 South First Street to the former Wells Fargo building located at the corner of Main Street and Cascade Avenue.
The City Hall Relocation Project is set to be completed this spring, according to Public Works Manager Jim Scheid.
“The new City Hall phases 1 and 2 are scheduled to conclude this spring with an anticipated opening near the beginning of April. Phase 1 and 2 consists mainly of asbestos abatement, roof replacement, and interior renovations. Most of the existing interior office space is being utilized and several new spaces are being created through these first two phases of renovation. That being said, it looks very different inside than it did as a bank. Things like wall and floor coverings and lighting have been upgraded and it makes the space look and feel completely different,” Scheid said.
Once completed, all City Hall operations and personnel will move into the new space while the initial design phase for renovations to the old City Hall will begin. More City Hall news will be released once it becomes available.
West Main Revitalization Project
Thanks to a $2 million grant awarded to the city by the Colorado Department of Transportation through their Revitalizing Main Streets Grant Program, the city is working to improve pedestrian safety while creating a more inviting, business-friendly atmosphere throughout the West Main Street corridor.
Over the years, the city has improved and streetscaped portions of Main Street
through the core downtown area. However, Main Street west of Selig Avenue has mostly remained in its outdated vehicular-focused configuration, making it inhospitable for pedestrians or bicyclists due to narrow/non-compliant sidewalks and generally incompatible with Main-Street style businesses that rely on comfortable access, pedestrian activity, and opportunistic sales. Essential storm sewer and water infrastructure in this area is also outdated, undersized, and in need of replacement.
As a remedy to these shortcomings, the West Main Street Revitalization project looks to accomplish the following:
1. Install ADA-compliant, widened sidewalks along both sides of the street.
2. Install bicycle facilities along one or both sides of the street, as space allows.
3. Improve pedestrian safety
4. Improve aesthetics of the corridor by “streetscaping” wherever possible
5. Create a more inviting, business-friendly atmosphere
6. Replace and upsize aged water infrastructure and portions of storm sewer
Capital projects are a collaborative effort between various city departments, City Councilors, and citizens whose feedback is critical in the planning and design process of any capital project.
To find out more about current capital projects, or to see a list of recently-completed projects, visit the www.MoveMo.CO webpage.
For more city news visit: CityOfMontrose.org.