Environmental Assessments Available for Two Park Projects
Contact: Melissa Wilson, 406 888-7895
Contact: Mary Riddle, 406 888-7898
WEST GLACIER, MONT. – Glacier National Park officials announce the availability of two environmental assessments (EAs) for public review. One project would make improvements to the West Entrance Station, and would include the creation of an additional approach lane. The other document is a development plan for the Headquarters area that would include the construction of a large vehicle washing facility for use with new transit busses. Both EAs are now available for public comment; comments are due by May 18, 2007.
The West Entrance Station is the primary entrance to the park from the west and receives heavy use during the summer months. “The existing entrance station and approach lanes are often insufficient to handle traffic volumes during peak summer months, which often causes lengthy vehicle backups,” noted Superintendent Mick Holm. “In addition, the expected increase in construction traffic during rehabilitation of the Going-to-the-Sun Road could cause further congestion at the entrance.”
The new approach lane would be added starting at the Headquarters turn-off and an automated entrance lane for employees and concessionaires would also be constructed. Modifications would also address: handicap accessibility, employee parking, security, and storage. The existing vault toilet would be replaced with an accessible restroom, storage, and breakroom for entrance station staff. The existing kiosks would be replaced with larger kiosks that would be designed to be consistent with the historic structure.
A Headquarters Campus Plan was produced to address several concerns. “We have analyzed a number of current and future issues for the Headquarters area within this plan,” stated Superintendent Holm.
The primary purposes of the plan are to: 1) clearly establish and delineate designated parking areas and vehicle storage areas, 2) identify locations within the Headquarters area that are appropriate for future development, 3) designate locations for and address impacts of a large vehicle washing facility, a new museum building, and a structural fire brigade building, and 4) identify buildings that could potentially be converted from housing to office space as needs arise.
The EAs are available through the park’s planning Web site: http://parkplanning.nps.gov/parkHome.cfm?parkId=61 and comments can be made directly through this Web site. Or write to: Superintendent, Glacier National Park, Attn: West Entrance EA, or Campus Plan EA, West Glacier, Montana 59936.
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Did You Know?
In 1974, 93% of Glacier National Park was recommended as Wilderness. To this day, over 93% of Glacier’s backcountry is managed as Wilderness.