Spring Gulch Road gravel section set to be paved

JACKSON, Wyo. — Yesterday, the Teton County Board of County Commissioners approved a contract to pave the gravel section of Spring Gulch Road.

The black arrows indicate the beginning and end of the section of Spring Gulch Road that will be paved. Currently the road is gravel. Photo: BCC staff report.

The 5,500-foot section of unpaved road stretches from Riva Ridge Road to Bar BC Ranch Road. The road requires regrading and dust control in the spring and fall of each year.

The approved contract is with Inberg-Miller Engineers for design and construction services.

According to the staff report, the paved road will be narrower than the current 20-foot wide gravel road to discourage speeding. “Other traffic calming elements will be considered; however, from a previous public input process specific to this roadway, most suggested elements were unpopular, other than speed radar signage,” the report stated.

Concerns were raised during the meeting about bike safety on the section of the road. While a separate pathway is not likely, a bike lane will be considered during the design phase.

In a public comment, Friends of Pathways Executive Director Katherine Dowson said, “It’s a lot safer for people who are walking or biking alongside the road to have cars going slow. Wide paved roads make you go faster.”

Dowson also suggested that if there is no separate pathway, infrastructure to slow down traffic should be incorporated in the design.

Commissioner Luther Propst said he was “glad to see this moving forward.”

“I hope we haven’t finished the conversation about traffic calming,” Propst said. “There are ways that we can present alternative traffic calming approaches in a way that will be popular publicly so I am going to keep pushing for us to think about a comprehensive program for traffic calming there and bicycle safety.”

Commissioner Mark Newcomb also spoke about traffic calming opportunities.

“Maybe to some degree, it’s on our shoulders to put some signage and to change the culture around driving on spring gulch road and the users of that road until we can get a pathway in there, but I am optimistic based on what I have seen on the Kelly road,” Newcomb said.

Design plans will be presented to the board for review at 50% completion and again at 100% completion for final approval. Snow fences will also be investigated during the design phase of the project, Amy Ramage, Teton County Engineer, explained.

Board Chair Natalia Macker pointed out that the project needs to align with The Jackson Hole Airport runway reconstruction project. She suggested that the staff collaborate with the airport.

Construction on the new runway is planned to begin on April 11, 2022, and last 78 days, with a planned reopening on the morning of June 28, 2022. Although no the main construction route, Spring Gulch Road might be used during the project.

About The Author

Buckrail @ Lindsay

Lindsay Vallen is a Community News Reporter covering a little bit of everything; with an interest in politics, wildlife, and amplifying community voices. Originally from the east coast, Lindsay has called Wilson, Wyoming home since 2017. In her free time, she enjoys snowboarding, hiking, cooking, and completing the Jackson Hole Daily crosswords.

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