Castle Rock has a newly updated Transportation Master Plan, and it's aimed at addressing the needs of drivers, cyclists and pedestrians as the town grows.
The plan, last updated in 2011, now looks ahead to 2040 and seeks to support Castle Rock …
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The plan, last updated in 2011, now looks ahead to 2040 and seeks to support Castle Rock when it has reached full build-out.
Roads will aim to better facilitate all users, including cyclists, pedestrian networks will become more connected and overall, the town hopes to keep up with anticipated development. On the heels of the Great Recession, the 2011 version of the plan had assumed a slower pace of growth than what the town is now experiencing, Public Works Director Bob Goebel said at the town council meeting Oct. 3.
“The predictions for growth were rather small and conservative at that time,” Goebel told council.
Now the town is growing both in infrastructure needs and in population — two reasons for updating the plan. In 1980, Castle Rock's population was just over 3,900, according to Census data. Today, the town estimates it is approaching 63,000 residents and will reach 140,000 at full build-out.
Since the 2011 plan, Castle Rock has completed roads projects such as the North Meadows Drive Extension, which provides a second entrance to The Meadows, and a new interchange at Interstate 25 with the new Castle Rock Parkway. Widening projects along Meadows Boulevard, taking it from two to four lanes, also included the addition of bike lanes.
The town has a capital improvement plan for the next five years, but beyond that, the Transportation Master Plan outlines that town's wish list for transportation projects, Town Manager Dave Corliss told council.
“Really appreciate the work that's gone into the Transportation Master Plan,” Corliss said. “This is the best guess that we have based on engineering evidence as to what we're going to need.”
Here's a look at some of what's in the latest Transportation Master Plan.
Upcoming road projects
The plan for roadways is to maintain the existing corridors, fill in network gaps and continue building connections as development occurs. Improvements such as widening projects and new I-25 interchanges will help the town keep up with growth.
In one example, the town has long planned a new Crystal Valley Interchange, in part to alleviate congestion caused by travelers who use Plum Creek Parkway to access I-25. The estimated $51 million project would be completed by 2030 and shared in cost by the town, county and developers, although funding for that project has not been secured.
Other less pricey, top-priority projects include widening Plum Creek Parkway between I-25 and Wolfensberger Road and widening Crowfoot Valley Road from Founders Parkway to the town limits.
Castle Rock's bike plan
Castle Rock has been adding on-road bike lanes to existing infrastructure in recent years and will continue adding bike lanes, when appropriate, as new roads are constructed. The town hopes to increase connectivity between homes and employment areas, schools and downtown.
Overall, the town's bike plan is to improve the network for both general transportation to parks, trails and open space and also for commuter cyclists. It also aims to accommodate bicyclists who are comfortable using on-road bike lanes and those who prefer using off-road bike lanes, such as multi-use sidewalks and trails.
Paving the way for pedestrians
The town's 2012 Transportation Design Criteria Manual sets guidelines for building the town's roadways. It stipulates that sidewalks must be provided along both sides of streets within new developments or expansions of existing developments, and must be compliant with the American with Disabilities Act.
For Denver commuters
The Colorado Department of Transportation is also considering adding Castle Rock as one of the stops for its Front Range bus service, the Bustang Interregional Express, between Denver and Colorado Springs. If so, residents would have another commuting option for reaching Denver, the master plan says.
The town is also assessing downtown parking, for which it is conducting a separate study.
Find more information on the master plan at CRgov.com.
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