‘Smoked and mirrored’ on Hwy 24
On March 22, I attended an “open house” on the envisioned “greenway” sponsored by the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) as part of its so-called “public process.”
As I examined the large displays, I was dismayed to realize that this was a grandiose presentation of more of the same! Amid the lavish outlays of the greenway options was the “bottom line,” the depiction of the Highway 24 redesign! It contained most of the objectionable features previously presented in the “public process” on the highway construction.
Gone were the Prospector knoll and several business sites at 21st Street. Numerous other business sites and residences wiped out! Four lanes on 21st Street?
Further investigation of the outlay revealed a reconfiguration and landscaping along Fountain Creek. Absent was any consideration of the natural integrity of the stream. The reconfiguration would eliminate habitat for the wildlife now present along the stream. When I questioned this, I was given the excuse of “Oh, they would re-establish their habitat.” What a farce! Once a habitat is gone, it is gone!
A trail? There is one along the stream now. It is about 18 inches wide and follows the meandering stream route. One can follow it from 21st Street to 31st Street, observing the wildlife now there (if you walk slowly and quietly).
Does anyone really want a concrete concourse and sidewalls along the creek? Or would this be a replay of the upgrade along 31st Street? I fear that an 800-pound gorilla is walking along Highway 24. What does an 800-pound gorilla do? Anything it wants to! Smoked and mirrored!