Planning Commission requests County meeting to address road issues

The blind hill on County Road 190W exemplifies Chaffee County road safety issues that prompted the Planning Commission to request a County meeting (photo by Jerry Raski).

The Chaffee County Planning Commission directed Planning and Zoning staff to request a meeting with the Board of County Commissioners to address county road issues during its Dec. 7 meeting in Salida.

Planning Commissioner Marjo Curgus made a motion to request the meeting, which would include relevant County personnel like County Engineer Gary Greiner and staff from the Planning and Zoning Dept. and Road and Bridge Dept.

Prior to her motion, Curgus said that Chaffee County traffic studies only look at traffic volume, noting that many other road and traffic issues should be included, especially issues affecting public safety.

Greiner acknowledged that many county roads are deficient and explained that the County has a policy not to not make any changes. He said the policy was written by an attorney in the ’90s.

“If residents want a road improved,” Greiner said, they “can only get a road back to what it was, not make any safety changes.”

Planning Commission Chair Anderson Horne seconded Curgus’ motion, noting that, in almost every land-use hearing, the Planning Commission is hamstrung in some way by county road conditions or policies.

Curgus emphasized that the issue needs to be addressed in the new year, prior to development of the new Chaffee County Land Use Code.

Joe Stone