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Yellowstone outlines 2020 road projects


As Yellowstone National Park prepares to close roads for the season next Monday, the park is outlining plans for three major road construction projects in 2020.

Two of the projects will cause traffic delays at the North Entrance and between Fishing Bridge and Indian Pond.

In 2018, Yellowstone reported a deferred maintenance backlog of $586 million. The 2020 projects will reduce that backlog by at least $50 million.

“These construction projects are critical to improving safety, access, and visitor experience along Yellowstone’s roads,” said Park Superintendent Cam Sholly.

The first major project will repair a 6-mile segment of road between Tower Fall and Chittenden Road. It will widen the road and create a larger, safer parking lot at Tower Fall General Store. The road will be completely closed until April 2022.

At the North Entrance, new construction will add a lane and kiosk to improve traffic flow. It will also replace two existing buildings and improve the flow of employee and delivery traffic. It will also improve pedestrian safety. The work will start in 2020 and take two years.

At Fishing Bridge, a new project will replace the Pelican Creek bridge and causeway with a viaduct. That will allow the wetland and creek to flow freely for the first time since 1902. That work will include improvements to the deck, piers, and abutment, add turn lanes, and construct a larger parking area east of the General Store.

The park completed a big road construction project in 2019. It was the second phase of the Norris to Golden gate project which widened 4.5 miles of road, increased and improved pullouts, and improved the parking lot, trail, and kiosk at Obsidian Cliff.

The third and final phase of Norris to Golden Gate is planned to start sometime after the park finishes the Tower fall to Chittenden Road section in 2022.

The park’s Road Construction webpage will be updated as new or more detailed information is available.

You can find those updates here.

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