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Park Begins Environmental Assessment for Zion Mt Carmel Highway

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Date: November 10, 2008
Contact: Ron Terry, 435-772-0160

Zion National Park is beginning an environmental assessment (EA) to evaluate the potential impacts from the proposed rehabilitation of the Zion Mt. Carmel Highway within the park. The proposed project would be to rehabilitate, restore and resurface approximately 9 miles of road from Canyon Junction to the East Entrance (excluding the Zion Mt. Carmel Tunnel).

The road was completed in 1930 and since then has only had routine cyclic maintenance including asphalt patches, crack-sealing and chip-sealing. Because of environmental effects (rain, snow, heat), heavy traffic, and time the road has deteriorated.

The proposed project is planned for two years. The first year would focus on the road from Canyon Junction to the west entrance into the tunnel and is proposed for fall 2009. The second year would complete the project from the east entrance to the tunnel to the east park boundary and is proposed for fall 2011.

The National Park Service (NPS) encourages public participation throughout the EA process. The public will have two opportunities to comment on this project: first during scoping (now), and again following the release of the EA. We are currently in the scoping phase of this project and invite you to submit your comments.

If you wish to submit comments during scoping we encourage you to do so online at http://parkplanning.nps.gov/zion. Comments may also be mailed to: Zion National Park, Zion Mt. Carmel Road Rehabilitation, Springdale, UT 84767. Please submit all comments before December 11, 2008.

Before including your address, phone number, e-mail address, or other personal identifying information in your comment, you should be aware that your entire comment – including your personal identifying information – may be made publicly available at any time. While you can ask us in your comment to withhold your personal identifying information from public review, we cannot guarantee that we will be able to do so.

For more information on this proposed project contact Kezia Nielsen, Environmental Protection Specialist, at (435) 772-0211 or visit the NPS planning website at http://parkplanning.nps.gov/zion.

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