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Sanderson Stewart bids on TIGER grant improvements

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A 2017 traffic study documented Big Sky’s traffic-related issues due to the area’s rapid growth and paved the way for the U.S. Department of Transportation to grant $10.3 million in March of 2018 for transportation improvements along Lone Mountain Trail. OUTLAW PARTNERS PHOTO

By Bay Stephens EBS LOCAL EDITOR

BIG SKY – At the Gallatin County Commissioner’s public meeting on July 23, officials opened a bid from infrastructure engineering firm Sanderson Stewart to conduct the transportation upgrades to Lone Mountain Trail, a.k.a. Highway 64, that are funded by the $10.3 million TIGER grant.

The project includes the construction of seven turn lanes on Lone Mountain Trail to help handle Big Sky’s current and future traffic volumes, as well as a pedestrian tunnel beneath the highway where Little Coyote Road intersects the highway near Meadow Village Center.

Sanderson Stewart, which has offices in Bozeman, Billings, Denver and Fort Collins, Colorado, included in its bid three sub consultants: HDR for environmental items, SK Geotechnical and Stahly Engineering and Associates for the pedestrian underpass, according to Jamie Grabinski, grants coordinator for Gallatin County.

The Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) grant was awarded by the U.S. Department of Transportation to the Big Sky project in March of 2018, and included nearly $2.5 million for the Skyline bus system, which will include adding four buses and six vans to the existing public transport fleet servicing Big Sky and the greater Bozeman area.

The grant was signed by the county commissioners in June after a 15-month back-and-forth process between the federal and county government. The request for bids was sent out directly after that.

Grabinski told the commissioners that the bid included all of the requested aspects of the project and that she will return to them a recommendation sometime in early August. Expected completion of the road improvements falls around July of 2022.

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