Cortez to propose gateway beautification

Cortez soon could have beautified medians to greet visitors to the town.

The Cortez City Council has given direction to the public works department to write a letter to the Colorado Department of Transportation to seek approval to spruce up the medians for the gateway entrances to the city.

Council member Matt Keefauver said what the city needs to decide is whether to have greenery with any such proposal.

“Do we want it to look like we have some vision?” he asked.

Nickerson said most people would like to see some type of greenery.

If the project comes to fruition, only the inside lanes would be closed to minimize traffic impacts, he said.

Council member Bob Archibeque said he was in favor of looking into this but didn’t want the project to be turned into a hodgepodge.

The city would use $600,000 already budgeted for street improvements through city sales tax to begin the whole process.

Business owners in the Highway 160/491 South Broadway reconstruction project area do not think the current medians are attractive.

Many said if medians are needed, they should at least look nice.

But one owner stated the city probably had better things to spend money on than medians.

Nickerson said if CDOT were to sign off on the medians soon, much of the concrete that would have to be removed would already have been done because of the South Broadway project.

“They will leave us set up,” he said.

Nickerson added the idea is in the early stages.

City Manager Shane Hale said CDOT is now willing to look at things, which hasn’t always been the case.

michaelm@cortezjournal.com