Monday, October 02, 2023

MDOT shares feasibility study for Hwy. 93 Ninepipe corridor

| January 12, 2023 12:00 AM

The Montana Department of Transportation (MDT) is hosting a virtual informational event from noon-1 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 12, to share the findings of a study of the U.S. Highway 93 Ninepipe corridor. The study evaluates the feasibility of improvements to the 4.5-mile Ninepipe segment, which extends from Gunlock Road to Brooke Lane near the Ninepipe and Kicking Horse Reservoirs.

Environmental documentation, completed in 2008, identified a preferred alternative and determined it would improve traffic flow and safety for vehicles and pedestrians while minimizing impacts to natural resources. The current feasibility study evaluated the benefits, impacts, challenges, costs, and overall feasibility associated with the preferred alternative and two modified concepts that were developed based on current information for the corridor.

The Ninepipe segment passes through federal and tribal lands designated for wildlife management, environmental protection and cultural preservation. The preferred alternative identified in the 2008 Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (SEIS) consisted of a two-lane roadway, widened shoulders, wildlife crossing structures, and a separated bicycle/pedestrian path connecting to a divided four-lane segment north of Brooke Lane and a northbound passing lane segment south of Gunlock Road.

The study is a collaborative process between MDT, the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes (CSKT), the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), resource agencies, stakeholders, and the public.

MDOT also hosted an in-person open house from 4-7 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 11, in the banquet room at Ninepipes Lodge, featuring an opportunity to view exhibits, speak with study representatives, ask questions, and provide comments.

For more information, or to register for the virtual event, head to Comments on the feasibility study are due by Feb. 6.

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