Missoula County secures key easements for Mullan Road roundabouts

Roundabout plans for Mary Jane Boulevard and Mullan Road.

With construction set to begin on portions of the Mullan infrastructure project, Missoula County last week secured three property easements to accommodate a roundabout at two key intersections.

Two easements will make room for a roundabout at George Elmer Drive and Mullan Road. The largest of the two easements was granted by Michael Flynn and family.

“We had to acquire a large amount of property from them,” said Shane Stack, the county’s director of Public Works. “We had to acquire it in order to construct this roundabout.”

The Flynn easement includes roughly 1 acre, most of which will include a permanent easement. The family will be compensated $86,000 for the easements, according to the contract.

Jeris Bray also granted a temporary easement to the roundabout at George Elmer Drive. His property is located south of Mullan Road while the Flynn property sits to the north.

“As we build this roundabout, the roadway really shifts to the north,” said Stack. “We offered to pave up to 10 feet into (the Bray) property if they gave us a construction agreement.”

The third easement, granted by Mitzie Clouse, provides access to around one-third of an acre near the intersection of Mary Jane Boulevard and Mullan Road.

A second roundabout is planned at that intersection, Stack said.

“We’re going to relocate their approach (to the intersection) and we needed a temporary construction agreement to do that,” Stack said. “They’ve signed the agreement to provide us that easement.”

As part of the Mullan project, both George Elmer Drive and Mary Jane Boulevard will extend from Mullan Road to West Broadway, creating two new north-south connectors within the project area.

Plans call for a future traffic signal on West Broadway, and two roundabouts on Mullan Road at major intersections. Widening Mullan Road wasn’t included in the city’s latest Long Range Transportation Plan.