The Durango Transit has announced changes to the Highway 160 and Mercy/Three Springs routes to better service its riders. Construction at the Durango Mesa Park has begun, and bump outs are back downtown - but look a bit different than they have the last few years. By Hannah Robertson. This story is sponsored by Tafoya Barrett & Associates and Happy Pappy’s Pizza and Wings
Durango transit announced an expansion to the highway 160 route to better serve underserved areas of Durango. Construction has begun for the first phase of the Durango Mesa Park, and bump outs have returned to downtown. Though if you've been walking through this past month, they look a bit different than before. You're watching the Local News Roundup, brought to you by Tafoya Barrett and Associates and Happy Pappy's Pizza and Wings. I'm Connor Shreve. As of May 1st, there are a few changes to Durango transit routes. The largest change is the expansion of the highway 160 route to include the Crestview neighborhood. The expansion means Crestview residents will no longer have to walk to stops along main avenue, and will provide transit service to a large residential area and affordable living facilities. The expansion is made more feasible as there is no additional operating costs. Additionally, changes are being made to implement route efficiencies on the mercy/three springs loop, including redirecting the buses path around Durango mall to address private property owners' liability concerns. You can find route maps, fare information, and more at the Durango transit website. The city of Durango and Durango Mesa Park foundation have begun construction on a maintenance access route to enable trail construction crews to access the trail build areas as part of the first phase of construction at Mesa Park. There are six initial trails planned for construction, each designed for specific uses, experiences, and directional travel, to give users and the community an idea of what the park will look like once it is completely developed. The trails and access road will remain closed to the public during construction, and as it is city proper, Durango Mesa Park is asking that everyone observes all signs in place throughout the construction period. Bump-outs are back downtown. The program began at the start of April, but there are some noticeable changes from the last few years. Originally started as a way for downtown stores and restaurants to offer additional outdoor areas during the Covid-19 pandemic, the program has evolved over the last couple of years, in part as part of the downtown's next steps plan. This year's program includes enhanced design guidelines, an increase in compliances standards, and a fee per square foot. The guidelines aim to create more uniformity and maintain better sight lines along main avenue, including ADA accessible platforms and ramps, the prohibition of signage and advertising, among others. Instead of the 28 participating businesses this past year, there are only 12 this year, and new designs in the 700 Block, where the largest number of bump-outs have been concentrated in the past. One of the changes is a temporary sidewalk outside four of the businesses that will enable a temporary sidewalk extension, a pedlet, that enables businesses to have a bistro area against their building and decrease pedestrian congestion. The design is part of one of the proposed plans for downtown's next steps, which features extended sidewalks and seating in front of restaurants and cafes. Learn more about these and other stories online at durangolocal.news. Thank you for watching this edition of the Local News Roundup. I'm Connor Shreve.