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CDOT nixes beltway study; Jeffco vows to plow ahead

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By AJ Vicens

The Colorado Department of Transportation cited a lack of funding June 9 in ending its study on completing the highway connection from C-470 to U.S. 36, a project Jeffco officials have been pushing hard.

Although CDOT will end its study and publish a report on what it has learned to date in July, Jeffco officials vow to march forward in creating a highway to “buckle the beltway.”

Jeffco, Arvada and Broomfield leaders formed a public highway authority recently to conduct studies and discussions to design and build a highway that has faced heavy resistance from Golden’s residents and elected leaders. Jeffco contributed $100,000 to the effort.

“The Jefferson Parkway Public Highway, we’re forging ahead, we are open for business, and we’re moving full-steam ahead in making contact with companies and individuals interested in forming a public/private partnership or creating a concessionaires agreement to buckle the beltway,” said Jeffco Commissioner Kevin McCasky. McCasky represents the county as a director on the Public Highway Authority board.

“We’re moving full-steam ahead. We’re out trying to make this buckle-the-beltway a reality, and we’re going to let the private companies tell us what they believe the utility and feasibility of this roadway is.”

Preston Gibson, director of the pro-development Jefferson Economic Council, praised the work CDOT had done to date and said its July report will aid the highway authority in its goal to push the project through. He said the beltway is necessary to support development in the area and to help the environment by keeping some of the 300,000 Jeffco residents in the workforce closer to home.

“We sincerely believe it’s time to build the rest of the beltway and give future generations a better chance of economic success close to home,” Gibson said.

Contact AJ Vicens at aj@evergreenco.com, and check www.columbinecourier.com for updates and breaking news.