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County Petitions Cañon City to Annex Part of Dozier Avenue

As construction gets underway on a roundabout and realignment of Dozier Avenue with US Highway 50 at the east edge of Cañon City, the Fremont County Commissioners approved a petition at their June 28th meeting to annex part of Dozier Avenue into Cañon City-city limits.    While Fremont County is petitioning for the annexation the City of Cañon City actually requested the annexation in order to secure the necessary grant funding for the project.

Since the City of Cañon City applied for the grant the Colorado Department of Transportation requires that the project area be under the jurisdiction of the City.    The annexation of Dozier Avenue from Highway 50 north to the intersection with Glenmoor Road enables the City to meet that requirement.  The Board of Commissioners unanimously approved the petition to the City of Cañon City requesting the annexation.  Construction of the roundabout began Tuesday with traffic flow from Dozier Avenue eventually to be directed eastward to a new intersection aligning with Steinmeier Avenue on the south side of the highway.

In the only other business to come before the commissioners at their June 28th regular meeting the Board received a petition from Four Mile area resident Joseph DeCook urging the county and City of Cañon City to make safety improvements to the intersection of East Main and Rhodes Avenue.   DeCook’s petition carried the names of 64 residents in the area of Sierra Court, Countryside Court, White Pine Court, and Sparton Drive.    DeCook said 98 percent of the people he contacted enthusiastically signed the petition.

The petition points out that Cañon City and Fremont County have been aware of the safety hazard at East Main and Rhodes Avenue for over ten years and that nothing has been done to solve the problem.   The petition demands that the problem be solved now.

The commissioners told DeCook that money is the biggest obstacle to improving the intersection because it is much more complicated than a simple fix by widening.   Those complications include securing private property on the southwest corner, a railroad crossing that sits a few feet away that cannot be moved, and the biggest issue is that of the existing irrigation ditch and stormwater drainage.    City Engineer Adam Lancaster told the commissioners previously that the Oil Creek Ditch Company may balk at any drainage improvements affecting their ditch water.    Lancaster said improving the intersection would also require dealing with stormwater that crosses under Highway 50 and will have to drain to the river.

The commissioners told DeCook they will continue to explore options for improving the intersection but without securing a grant the project could be cost prohibitive.