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New Improvement Plan Will Upgrade Downtown Wilson

Wilson, Wyoming Post Office
Wikimedia Commons via CC BY-SA 2.0
The Downtown Improvement Plan will change downtown Wilson to accommodate increased traffic but still keep the community's local character.

The unincorporated town of Wilson in northwest Wyoming will be getting an upgrade to its road system thanks to the proposed Wilson Downtown Improvement Plan. The proposed plan will improve safety and accessibility for drivers, bikers, and pedestrians in the area. It includes things like the installation of sidewalks and speed response signs that remind drivers of their speed, and improving parking.

"[In] this area, really, the amount of traffic that we're seeing over Teton Pass due to business and commuters and visitors has just grown tremendously, and the unincorporated town of Wilson definitely feels that," said Heather Overholser, the Teton County Director of Public Works. "We want people to feel safe navigating around the downtown and feeling comfortable whether you're in a vehicle or on foot or on a bike."

The project has already undergone several public comment periods. The most recent one closed May 7, and the information collected from it will be presented to the steering committee before being finalized and brought to the Board of County Commissioners for final approval. Overholser expects construction to begin in 2022.

"This project is one of 13 projects that was approved for a federal build grant. And we're now working with FTA, and our consulting team, and all of our partners, to execute these projects. The funds aren't going to be obligated by the federal government until 2022, so we have to wait until then to actually put this conceptual plan in place," she said. "But as soon as we get our consultant on board, which will be probably in June, we'll be starting the NEPA process and preliminary design and cost estimating and be ready to start moving on the project with final design and construction as soon as those federal funds are obligated."

According to Overholser, the final product will be heavily influenced by the public.

"It's been great to have the community of Wilson involved and providing input and utilizing that to expand the plan, expand our thinking on the plan, and try to incorporate as much of it as possible," said Overholser.

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