Environmental assessments on Wupatki - Sunset Crater scenic loop road available for public review

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. - Superintendent Diane Chung announced Aug. 20 that the Route 10 Environmental Assessment/Assessment of Effect (EA) to repair road shoulders along the south entrance road to Sunset Crater Volcano National Monument was released for a 30-day public review period starting Aug. 18. This action is needed because the condition of turnouts and road shoulders are in poor condition. The current shoulder material for FR 545 consists of volcanic cinders that offer no compaction when driven over by motor vehicles. When this occurs, both the shoulder and edge of the asphalt surface are damaged. Visitors also use two informal turn-outs to park or turn around, causing further damage to off-pavement surfaces.

The Environmental Assessment/Assessment of Effect analyzes the impacts of two alternatives - A) no action and B) repair of Sunset Crater south entrance road shoulders. Alternative B is the preferred alternative. As part of the project, two informal turn-outs would be closed and obliterated, and one turn-out would be formalized for future use. The Old Haul Road (FR 9129E), just west of Bonito Park, would also be closed at the FR 545 junction. Visit http://parkplanning.nps.gov and then select "Flagstaff Areas" from the drop down box and then follow the link to Repair Shoulders, FR 545, NPS Route 10, Bonito Park to review and comment.

Copies of the EA are available for review at Flagstaff Area National Monuments, 6400 North Highway 89, Flagstaff, AZ 86004, Flagstaff City-Coconino County Public Library, 300 West Aspen Ave., Flagstaff, Arizona 86001, and Sunset Crater Volcano National Monument Visitor Center.

All comments are to be submitted by Tuesday, Sept. 15. Comments may also be faxed to (928) 526-4259 or and e-mailed to FLAG_Superintendent@nps.gov. For more information, call (928) 526-1157 ext. 270.

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