Glacier National Park announces road preservation work

Posted at 2:36 PM, Feb 08, 2019
and last updated 2019-02-08 18:08:51-05
The year-to-date total at 2.9 million people short of last year’s 3.2 million record. (MTN News photo)

WEST GLACIER – People traveling through Glacier National Park will soon be seeing some road improvements.

Plans are underway for what’s being dubbed as a “significant pavement preservation effort in 2019 and into 2020.” Some roads — including the Going-to-the-Sun Road — will receive a protective coating similar to a chip seal to extend the life of the road surfaces.

The treatment will protect the $200 million investment in the Going-to-the-Sun Road, including preserving significant roadbed and pavement work that was undertaken during the Going-to-the-Sun Road rehabilitation project over the last decade, according to Park spokeswoman Lauren Alley.

The $9 million project will focus on both the east and west sides of the Going-to-the-Sun Road, Chief Mountain Road, the west portion of the Camas Road, Apgar Village Loop, the Swiftcurrent Motor Inn Loop and Parking Area, and other minor areas.

Pavement preservation will impact spring hiker and biker access and restrictions will likely be in place on both sides of the pass between Avalanche and Rising Sun, according to a news release.

The park will update its road status webpage with restrictions, and issue more information about restrictions once the work schedule is known.

Park officials note that Going-to-the-Sun Road will not open to Logan Pass before June 21 this year and that next year the popular road will not open before June 22 if necessary in order to complete pavement preservation activities.

Alley says the Park worked with the Federal Highway Administration to select a pavement preservation material that would be compatible with multiple road uses, including bicycle access.

In 2020, the park in partnership with the Federal Highway Administration will award a contract to finalize the multi-year rehabilitation work on the Going-to-the-Sun Road.

The final work includes repairs to some masonry features, additional log rail replacement, and signing improvements.