PPRTA holds public meeting for extension projects, few attend

Filed under: Daily News |

At a sparsely attended special meeting Thursday night at the city administration building, the board and staff of the Pikes Peak Rural Transportation Authority provided information and heard public comments on the capital projects list for the proposed PPRTA extension on the November 6 ballot.

Of the 50 attendees, all but half a dozen appeared to be staff members, elected officials and members of the media. Longtime activists Walter Lawson and Al Brody were among the few members of the public present.

The total project list, which voters in El Paso County, Colorado Springs, Manitou Springs, Green Mountain Falls, Calhan and Ramah will consider in November, consists of nearly 200 projects throughout the Pikes Peak Region. Divided into A and B lists, project price tags range from $10.45 million for the proposed extension of Centennial Boulevard from Fillmore to Fontanero to $60,000 for street overlay in Ramah.

If tax revenue from the proposed 10-year extension is 150 percent of that now estimated, it’s conceivable that the entire list could be completed for a total expenditure of $567 million. Approximately 85 percent would be spent on roads, bridges, traffic signals and other measures to improve the regional vehicle transportation network, with the remainder dedicated to public transit, bike lane improvements, trails and sidewalks.

Some officials at the meeting were dismayed by the low turnout.

“You work hard to put these meetings together,” said city communications director Cindy Aubrey, “and then no one comes.”

El Paso County Commissioner Dennis Hisey was more sanguine.

“I’m here to hear public comments,” he said, “and I’m happy to do so, no matter how many people there are.”

To view the entire list of proposed projects, click here.