El Camino Real FLAP Project

The Department of Transportation is Seeking Public Comment on the El Camino Real de Tierra Adentro National Historic Trail Buckman Road Segment Retracement Trail Project Environmental Assessment

The Department of Transportation’s Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) Central Federal Lands Highway Division (CFLHD) is seeking public comments on the El Camino Real de Tierra Adentro National Historic Trail Buckman Road Segment Retracement Trail Project Environmental Assessment (project). The project is being led by the FHWA CFLHD and in coordination with Santa Fe County, Bureau of Land Management (BLM), U.S. Forest Service (USFS), and National Park Service (NPS), which jointly administers the El Camino Real de Tierra Adentro (Royal Road to the Interior) National Historic Trail (NHT) with BLM.

The project proposes a 15-mile trail retracing a portion of the congressionally designated route of El Camino Real de Tierra Adentro NHT along Old Buckman Road (CR 77) and the creation of a multiuse trail along CR 62 and Caja del Rio Road linking this oldest segment of the El Camino Real to the existing Santa Fe River Greenway Trail. Project development has incorporated input from local, state, and federal agencies; and the general public. A public scoping meeting was held on February 16, 2016, to gather public input. In addition, Santa Fe County convened a user group, which included mountain bikers, hikers, and equestrian users, to solicit their feedback for trail location and amenities.

FHWA CFLHD, in coordination with its local, state, and federal project partners, has developed an Environmental Assessment that describes the purpose and need of the project, alternatives evaluation, existing conditions and anticipated impacts, and mitigation measures. The Environmental Assessment was issued for public review on November 21, 2016, for a 30-day public review and comment period. After evaluating and responding to all substantive public comments, FHWA CFLHD and its project partners could implement the entire project, adopt portions of it, or modify it.

The EA is posted on the Santa Fe County website: http://www.santafecountynm.gov/open_space_and_trails_program/flap

Hard copies of the Environmental Assessment are available at the following locations:
• BLM Taos Field Office, 226 Cruz Alta Road, Taos, NM 87571
• USFS Española Ranger District Office, 1710 N Riverside Drive, Española, NM 87532
• Santa Fe County, 901 West Alameda Street, Suite 20-C, Santa Fe, NM 87501
• Santa Fe Public Library, 145 W Washington Ave, Santa Fe, NM 87501
• New Mexico State Library, 1209 Camino Carlos Rey, Santa Fe, NM 87507

Comments on the project must be submitted by December 23, 2016.**

Mail comments to Brent Nagen, FHWA CLFHD, 12300 West Dakota Avenue, Lakewood, CO 80228. If you have any questions about this project please contact Brent Nagen at 720-963-3411.
File your comments electronically at [bot protected email address]. Please include “El Camino EA Comments” in the subject line of your email.

The proposed project is an activity implementing a land management plan and not authorized under the HFRA and is subject to 36 CFR 218 Subparts A and B.

Specific written comments (§218.2) on the proposed project will be accepted for 30 calendar days following publication of this notice in the Santa Fe New Mexican and Albuquerque Journal. If the comment period ends on a Saturday, Sunday, or Federal holiday, comments will be accepted until the end of the next Federal working day. The publication date in the newspaper of record is the exclusive means for calculating the comment period. Those wishing to comment should not rely upon dates or timeframe information provided by any other source.

Only individuals or entities (as defined by 36 CFR 218.2) who submit timely and specific written comments (as defined by 36 CFR 218.2) about this proposed project or activity during this or another public comment period established by the Responsible Official will be eligible to file an objection. Other requirements to be eligible to submit an objection are defined by 36 CFR 218.25(a)(3) and include name, postal address, title of the project and signature or other verification of identity upon request and the identity of the individual or entity who authored the comments.

Individual members of an entity must submit their own individual comments in order to have eligibility to object as an individual. A timely submission will be determined as outlined in 36 CFR 218.25 (a)(4). It is the responsibility of the sender to ensure timely receipt of any comments submitted. Names and contact information submitted with comments will become part of the public record and may be released under the Freedom of Information Act.

Comments should be within the scope of the proposed action, have a direct relationship to the proposed action, and must include supporting reasons for the Responsible Official to consider (36 CFR 218.2).