Summit County Safe Passages receives awards for work to reduce wildlife-vehicle collisions |

Summit County Safe Passages receives awards for work to reduce wildlife-vehicle collisions

Colorado Parks and Wildlife awarded Summit County Safe Passages its 2020 Northwest Region Partner of the Year Award.

The award honors the group’s efforts to protect wildlife corridors and reduce wildlife-vehicle collisions in Summit County, according to a news release.

In March, the Public Lands Alliance awarded White River National Forest Dillon Ranger District wildlife biologist Ashley Nettles its 2020 Agency Leadership Award for her work creating and facilitating Summit County Safe Passages.

Since its inception in 2017, the collaborative nonprofit partnership has developed a plan that identifies and provides recommendations for protecting wildlife movement corridors and reducing wildlife-vehicle conflicts.

Among the highest priorities is along Vail Pass, where the majority of land is managed by the White River National Forest. The Summit County Safe Passages plan envisions three wildlife crossing structures on the east side of Vail Pass.

“Reconnecting the Vail Pass wildlife movement corridors will improve driver safety and restore one of the most important habitat connections for many of the wildlife species that call Summit County home,” Nettles said in the release.

The group is working to secure funds to design and construct the recommended mitigation system.

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