Kalispell Selects Design Team for New Rail Trail

Alta Planning and Design and KLJ Engineers were officially selected on Monday night

By Justin Franz
A Mission Mountain Railroad freight train goes through downtown Kalispell on Dec. 27, 2017. Justin Franz | Flathead Beacon

The Kalispell City Council selected Alta Planning and Design and KLJ Engineers to design and construct a new rail trail through downtown Kalispell. The council selected the contractors at its April 2 meeting.

The trail will stretch from Woodland Park west to Meridian Road along the former Great Northern Railway right-of-way. The owner of the tracks, BNSF Railway, has filed to abandon the rails through town and trains will stop running into Kalispell once the new Glacier Rail Park is completed east of town off Whitefish Stage Road.

Kalispell received proposals from multiple design and engineering firms and did interviews with four teams in March. Removal of the old railroad, engineering and construction of the new trail and the rebuilding of a number of cross-streets through the core area is expected to cost approximately $4 million.