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The work of this project is to replace existing walkways and stair structures with new more
sustainable and cave environment friendly and safe material. These structures are need to
ensure the safety of the public and a means of traveling through sections of the cave where
these structures are needed. The project includes replacing sections of the walkway and small
section of stairs at the Hansen cave entrance area. The replacement of a section of walk way
is also needed at the Middle Cave Lake area.

Current handrails are made from anodized aluminum. Over the last 15 years, high use has left
this handrail pocked and unstable.
Steel, aluminum, and other materials deteriorate quickly in the humid cave environment,
resulting in unstable infrastructure and unsafe components.
The newer Composite and stainless steel materials are needed to ensure the safety of all
individuals who will be traveling through the cave.

Cave ecosystems are very fragile. Corroding materials can alter water and soil chemistry,
disturb sensitive species habitat, and resulting in adverse impacts to an environment that is
difficult to restore. To ensure the caves environment is protected for all future use of the public
newer walkways and hand rails are needed.

The cave is the park’s primary resource and the focal feature of the visitor experience in the
monument and must be protected and maintained in a way that ensure future generations will
experience its natural environment.

Measurable Results

Communicate with the natural resource management team to inspect and continually monitor
the rails and walkways. Utilize documentation to ensure new structure result in safer and more
protected environment inside the cave by documenting the water and soil chemistry and
ensuring the sensitive species habitat is protected.

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