SR 128 bike pathway work halted for the holidays
by Ron Drake
contributing writer
Dec 26, 2012 | 896 views | 0 0 comments | 7 7 recommendations | email to a friend | print
All lanes of traffic on state Route 128 northeast of Moab will be open for the holidays, according to Ken Davis, project information coordinator for Flatiron Constructors, the general contractor for the Lions Park Transit Hub and Colorado River Pathway Project. Construction crews will not be working on the pathway from Dec. 21 through Jan 2, when bridge foundation drilling along with one-lane closures will get underway again, according to a news release issued Dec. 21.

“The soil nail wall near Lions Park is now complete and work on the pedestrian tunnel is quickly progressing and the concrete lid of the tunnel is expected to be poured shortly after the New Year,” officials said in the news release.

When completed in late summer or fall of 2013, the $9.2 million project will include an underpass for bicyclists to access an existing paved path into Moab along U.S. 191 without having to dodge traffic on SR 128. That underpass will connect Lions Park on the north side of SR 128 with the new transit hub on the south.

The project will also include elevated paths on the river side of SR 128 to keep bikers and pedestrians safe along the first three miles of the road to the Negro Bill Canyon trail head. About 1,800 feet of elevated pathway will be built in several different areas adjacent to SR 128, project officials have said.

Beginning Jan. 2, commuters should expect to again encounter one-way traffic controlled by traffic signals on timers near the drilling operations. Two sets of traffic signals may be in use at certain times during the project, but the total time of delay will not be more that 15 minutes, according to construction officials. The traffic lights and road closures will be in place Sunday nights through Thursday nights and will be removed on weekends when work is not being done.

Full road closures are expected to begin in mid-March and may happen at any time through the project, however seven days’ notice will be provided via update notices displayed on VMS boards in place along SR 128. Full closures will only occur between 11:30 p.m. and 5:30 a.m. Sunday through Thursday, officials said.

Emergency services to and from Castle Valley and other areas along SR 128 will still be available during the full closures. Grand County Sheriff’s dispatch will be able to contact the site foreman via satellite phone to inform construction crews that emergency vehicles will be going through and the crew will remove the construction equipment from the road. That process could result in a delay of up to 15 minutes, officials said.

Anyone transporting someone to Moab Regional Hospital by private vehicle from Castle Valley or other locations east of the project site on SR-128, must call the sheriff’s dispatch office at 911 so the road can be opened up by the time the they arrive at the project site. A sheriff’s deputy will likely meet the vehicle at the other side of the project to escort it to the hospital, officials said.

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