Efforts Underway to Make Colorado Roads Safer
Although many Colorado residents continue to work from home because of the pandemic, workmen are still busy on highways throughout the state.
The Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) is working around the clock to complete several road construction projects that will add capacity and improve safety.
Fall Construction Projects to Help Alleviate Traffic and Reduce Auto Accidents
The following projects are underway:
- Pothole repair. Old pavement, changing weather conditions, and increasing traffic make potholes one of Colorado’s most urgent problems with roads. Although potholes are usually fixed within 48 hours, with 23,000 lane miles of highway to oversee and repair, road crews cannot locate every pothole right away. The CDOT encourages drivers to report potholes in the highway online. (Contact the city or county regarding potholes on side streets.) If your vehicle has been damaged by a pothole, you may be able to file a liability claim. Contact Colorado’s Office of Risk Management as soon as possible.
- I-70 express lane. A new express lane is being added to westbound I-70 and will be open to traffic by the end of 2020. The westbound I-70 express lane will be available for free throughout the winter. There will be no tolls until the spring and summer of 2021.
- Central 70. The Central 70 Project will rebuild a 10-mile section of I-70, add an express lane in both directions, eliminate an old viaduct, lower the road between Brighton and Colorado Boulevards, and create a four-acre park. The Quebec Street on-ramp to westbound I-70 will be closed from November 3 through mid-November to allow crews to rebuild the on-ramp. Drivers will go instead the Holly Street on-ramp to westbound I-70. The Steele Street on-ramp to westbound I-70 will be closed from November 9 through the summer of 2021 so that it can be rebuilt.
- I-25 South Gap. Crews are working on an 18-mile stretch of Interstate 25 known as the Gap. Construction begins south of Castle Rock and continues to Monument. Road shoulders will be widened so that vehicles involved in accidents can pull off more easily, emergency responders will be able to function more easily and safely, and drainage can be improved. Express lanes will be added in both directions so drivers can use the express lane for a toll or one of two general-purpose lanes toll-free. Carpoolers and motorcyclists can access the express lanes toll-free.
- I-25 North. I-25 is being expanded with an express lane in each direction to increase mobility along a six-mile section of I-25 that connects downtown Denver to northern Colorado.
- Military Access, Mobility, and Safety Improvement. CDOT has begun work on its Military Access, Mobility, and Safety Improvement Project to improve infrastructure serving military bases in Colorado Springs.
Earlier this year, the state highway department released a long-term plan that called for an extra $500 million a year for the next decade, an unlikely immediate expenditure given the deep cuts expected in both 2020 and 2021. The Joint Budget Committee instead voted to cancel a $50 million general fund transfer to the CDOT that is used to make payments on some of its bonds, but was ultimately offset by an $111 million premium on a debt issuance of $500 million.