MISSOULA — The Mullan BUILD Project in Missoula is moving along, now 60% designed, and ready to start construction in the spring.
The project, which was awarded $13 million in federal grant money last fall, is starting its focus on the Mary Jane Boulevard and George Elmer Drive areas.
Officials say the Mullan Road Flynn Lane intersection is also a high priority.
Developers did apply for more grant money this year, as the $13 million won't cover the cost of the entire project but were denied.
Public Works Director Jeremy Keene says officials are considering a special impact fee to help offset some of the additional costs.
It would be similar to and in addition to the city's transportation fee, based on property size. Early numbers would be between $900 to $2,300 per housing unit.
Keene says Missoula is a growing community, and planning for the Mullan area will help us grow smartly.
“So, what we would do in the Mullan area, is creating a special district, with a second fee, that would help pay for those transportation improvements just in the Mullan area,” Keene explained.
“So, it's a combination of that city-wide fee, which we are using those impact fees monies for the Mullan project, and this additional fee that would recoup the cost that the developers would normally pay on their own,” he added.
Keene noted that more specific numbers on the special impact fee should be available in the coming weeks, and project developers will bring the idea to Missoula City Council for approval in December.
There are recorded community meetings on the project every other Friday. More information can be found here.
Keene says that Mountain Line does plan to expand its bus routes in the area in the future.