The Montezuma County commissioners voted unanimously Monday to oppose a plan intended to increase safety at an intersection in the northern part of the county.
The decision came after the latest in a series of public meetings and discussions about the juncture of Highway 491 and Road BB near Pleasant View. In the past, county officials have said it is unsafe because of a steep hill that shortens visibility. At least two fatal accidents have reportedly occurred there, and a previous county commission had included it on a list of hazardous intersections – something current Commissioner Larry Don Suckla said probably would not have been done if they could have foreseen this result. The Colorado Department of Transportation had first suggested closing the intersection entirely. Drivers would have been diverted to Road CC a mile away, and the county would have been given more than $600,000 to improve the alternative route. But after local residents voiced strong opposition, the county rejected that idea. CDOT now is proposing to make the intersection right-in, right-out only. But at yet another public hearing Monday, more than a dozen residents said the change would not really improve the intersection and would be a great inconvenience. They suggested less-drastic measures such as warning lights, a lower speed limit or a turn lane. However, CDOT will have the final decision.