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Cyclists 4 Community’s Proposal for Funding a Golden – Boulder Highway 93 Feasibility Study for a Separated Bicycle Facility

January 2024

Matt Muir, C4C Executive Director

C4C proposes coordination and cooperation among governments and nonprofits to fund a $450,000 feasibility study for a Golden – Boulder bikeway (separated hard surface multi-use path) in or near the State Highway 93 right-of-way.  C4C is working closely with Bike JeffCo on this project.

The study would result in an objective engineering basis on which to make subsequent planning, design, and construction decisions for the multi-modal network or its complement in the SH 93 travel shed.

Cyclists 4 Community has budgeted $30,000 to contribute to such a partnership and allocated staff time to this project through 2025.


Following Cyclists 4 Community’s successful contribution to the feasibility study for North Foothills Highway / Boulder – Lyons bikeway, the same separated multi-use bicycling facility approach would provide a safe, appealing, and accessible multi-modal facility in the SH 93 right-of-way.  This highway is currently avoided by vulnerable users due to objective safety concerns such as AADT (daily traffic volume of vehicles), auto speed, and its overall high stress nature.

The stretch of bikeway would be a crucial connection among multi-modal facilities in the Golden – Denver – Clear Creek Canyon (Peaks to Plains Trail) area, north to the City of Boulder’s Core Arterial Network project (CAN), to Boulder County’s popular cycling routes, as well as an element in Boulder County’s growing hard-surface path system.  Eventually, connectivity would exist to path systems in Weld and Larimer Counties as well.  The result would achieve regional or even state-wide multi-modal safety, access, and appeal.

There are multiple jurisdictions and related plans that govern this highway.

  1. CDOT West Connect Coalition PEL
  2. Front Range Trail
    1. CFRT Feasibility Study Final Report (PDF)
    2. CFRT Feasibility Study presentation (PDF)
    3. CFRT Community Meeting Public Comment Report (PDF)
  3. Rocky Mountain Greenway (Matt does not have good information on this)
  4. Boulder County Transportation Master Plan
    1. Boulder County Vision Zero
  5. DRCOG Active Transportation Plan
  7. City of Boulder Core Arterial Network Project – SH 93 and South Boulder is a missing connection among other connections like the North Foothills Bikeway (feasibility study phase), the SH 119 Diagonal Bikeway (construction beginning April, 2024), and the SH 7 / Arapahoe Bikeway (planning phase), and the US 36 Boulder – Westminster Path that link from the city to the county.  It may also provide answers for multi-modal access to Doudy Draw and Marshall Mesa trailheads from the city, an objective of other local cycling groups like the Boulder Mountainbike Alliance.

A feasibility study would comprehensively analyze the above considerations and provide a factual basis for ways to proceed in the entirety of the multi-jurisdictional project’s scope.

Like the North Foothills Bikeway feasibility study, such a study would also break the project into sections thus allowing governments to understand subsequent cost decisions in segments weighed against the entire length of the project.

Support for The Project

Boulder County’s leading network multi-modal Transportation Master Plan calls for separated hard-surface paths parallel to major commuter highways and where the safety data indicates the need.  However, stopping such a facility at the Jefferson County line makes no sense.

Cyclists 4 Community and Bike JeffCo both support this project.  A study would potentially lead to a facility serving millions of Front Range residents who support safe, appealing, and accessible infrastructure.  Users of the path would effectively reduce their auto-related serious injuries and fatalities to zero.

CDOT Strava Metro Data Analysis Summary, 2018.  SH 93 is a “Very High Use” Corridor.

Front Range detail from the same study as above.

Denver Metro Bike Ped Study, 2023, page 6

An Initial Proposal

The entire $450,000 feasibility study cost can be cooperatively funded in many ways, here’s one idea of how it could work.

  1. Cyclists 4 Community – $30,000
  2. Boulder County – Based on verbal conversations, Boulder County government supports this project and may be able to contribute funding around $30,000 – $50,000 in 2025.  Boulder County’s 2024 budget is already allocated.
    1. Note, if C4C were to combine its $30,000 with, say, $50,000 from Boulder County Governement, that would be sufficient to fulfill the typical community match segment of a $450,000 grant and, thus, pay for it all.
  3. CDOT
  4. City of Boulder
  5. Jefferson County
  6. City of Golden
  7. Grants (DRCOG, GoCo, Team Evergreen, …)

Cost Comparison

In 2022, Boulder County applied for a $300,000 grant from DRCOG to perform a feasibility study for the same bikeway from the City of Boulder to the Jefferson County line.  That application was denied.  For $450,000, C4C is proposing to perform the study on the entire 13 mile scope of project between Golden and Boulder.

The 11 mile feasibility study for Boulder – Lyons costs $400,000.  The $450,000 cost estimate for the 13 miles between Golden and Boulder is based on a verbal quote from an engineering firm familiar with such work.


  • Safety
  • Access
  • Appeal, health, livability
  • Induced demand management versus empirically based utilization or diversification of right-of-way
  • Emissions for health
  • Emissions for climate
  • Equity (safe, network access for millions of Front Range residents)
  • Environment
  • Cost (a single serious injury or fatality versus $450,000)

Next Steps

Learn more about Bike JeffCo’s video “summit” meeting covering the topic on January 23rd, 2024 here.