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(SAN MIGUEL COUNTY CO 3-30-20) – San Miguel County Parks & Open Space is pleased to announce that two new community projects will receive grant funding, including a planning grant/feasibility study for the proposed Down Valley Connector Trail and a bridge over Ingram Creek for the County’s new Bridal Veil Creek Trail.
“We are thrilled that our region was able to secure these grants to further our efforts to expand and enhance local trails!” San Miguel County Commissioner Kris Holstrom said. Holstrom serves on the Gunnison Valley Transportation Planning Region (GVTPR) Board and also as a County representative.
Both projects will receive Multimodal Options Fund (MMOF) grants through the State’s Gunnison Valley Transportation Planning Region, which has been allocated $2.3M to be used in the region, San Miguel County Parks & Open Space Director Janet Kask said.
“By leveraging grant funds to improve safety, accessibility, and recreational opportunities, San Miguel County enhances the quality of life for all of our residents,” Kask said. The Telluride Mountain Club has been instrumental with the Ingram Creek bridge project. “They’re matching funds and have hired an engineer to work on the bridge design,” Kask said. “And they’ve been a driving force with fundraising.”
Constructed in the fall of 2019, the Bridal Veil Creek Trail was a collaborative effort between San Miguel County, the Idarado Mining Co., the Telluride Mountain Club, and the Town of Telluride. The Telluride Mountain Club has identified the Bridal Veil Creek Trail as a “priority trail” in their Trails Sustainability Plan. The Ingram Creek bridge will be located .3 miles up from the Valley View parking lot trailhead, with stellar views for an incredible hiking experience. Although the trail currently crosses Ingram Creek in a lower location, water levels can be high during peak runoff and unpredictable during the summer monsoon season. The new bridge location will divert the trail slightly from its current alignment.
The Ingram Creek Bridge will allow safe, consistent pedestrian use of the trail during high-water flows. Bridge engineering design has begun, and construction is slated for the Fall of 2020. MMOF grant funds of $60,000. have been awarded for the Ingram Creek Bridge, with $30,000 in matching funds provided by San Miguel County and $30,000 provided by the Telluride Mountain Club, which held a fundraiser for the bridge last fall. The total project is estimated at $120,000.
The Down Valley Connector Trail is a proposed, 3.4-mile trail that would add a necessary link between the Down Valley/satellite communities and Telluride. There are many challenges with this trail project including, but not limited to, the physical grade of land along with private property and the need to obtain recreational trail easements. If the feasibility study proves successful, the Down Valley Connector Trail would provide safe passage for pedestrians and cyclists from the Down Valley Park through Sawpit to the M59 trail to/from Telluride. MMOF grant funds of $75,000 have been awarded for the Down Valley Connector Trail planning grant/feasibility study; San Miguel County will provide a match of $75,000 with a total project estimate of $150,000.
For more information, please contact Janet Kask of San Miguel County Parks & Open Space at 970-369-5469.