Councilors support improvements for Horizon Drive
Grand Junction city councilors voiced their support for a state grant application for $5 million in improvements to Horizon Drive.
According to terms of the program, Responsible Acceleration of Maintenance and Partnerships, a 20-percent match is required if the funds are awarded. The city and Horizon Drive’s Business Improvement District each would dedicate $500,000 to meet the match.
Improvements which would be completed in advance of the 2015 Junior College World Series would include two roundabouts near the Interstate 70 interchange to help traffic flow.
Councilor Jim Doody said he was in support of improving the strip lined by a number of hotels and restaurants.
“This is just an extension of the vision they have for the whole corridor,” he said of business owners along the route.
An original grant application for the project estimated the project would cost $4 million, but officials from the Colorado Department of Transportation encouraged the city to increase the application to $5 million, to account for any shortfalls. Without increasing the grant application request, any costs above $4 million would be absorbed by the city and the Horizon Drive BID, not by the state grant.
Councilor Marty Chazen said he didn’t think the area needed improvements and was uncomfortable with how the city would pay for their portion of the matching funds. He also questioned cost of a 19-percent surcharge tacked onto the grant, fees that would pay for project oversight by CDOT.
“I’m just not sure we’re solving a problem,” he said, questioning the need for roadway upgrades. “I will be supporting this. In my mind, this is just taking the next step in the application process.”