Among the Colorado Dept. of Transportation’s plans for construction this summer in the Denver metro area is the start of a $310-million safety and capacity improvement project on U.S. 36—the state’s largest road construction project of the year. In all, CDOT says there will be more than 40 active construction projects in the Denver metro area this summer, totaling over $600 million.
While a large number of projects are continuing from last year, there are several projects that will begin in the coming weeks or later this summer:
• U.S. 36 between Federal Boulevard and 88th Street: The $310-million design-build project widens U.S. 36 to accommodate an express lane in each direction, reconstructs the existing pavement, replaces five bridges on U.S. 36, adds Bus Rapid Transit components along the corridor and constructs a commuter bikeway along much of the corridor, among other improvements. When complete, motorists in the express lane can carpool, ride the bus or pay a toll for a more efficient and reliable option or travel in the general purpose lanes for free. Construction will begin this summer and continue through December 2014.
• I-225 between Mississippi Avenue and Parker Road: This $43-million project widens I-225 from two to three lanes in each direction, completing the widening of I-225 between I-70 and I-25. In addition, the Yale Avenue bridge over I-225 will be replaced to accommodate RTD’s extension of the light rail from Parker Road to Iliff Avenue. Both CDOT and RTD are funding the project. Construction will begin by the end of April and continue through April 2014.
• Sheridan Boulevard over the Union Pacific Railroad: The $7-million Bridge Enterprise project replaces the Sheridan Boulevard bridge over the Union Pacific Railroad near I-76. The original bridge was constructed in 1966 and is in poor condition. Construction will begin in April and continue through May 2013.
• Pecos Street over I-70: The $17-million Bridge Enterprise project replaces the Pecos Street bridge over I-70, which was originally constructed in 1965 and is in poor condition. In addition, two roundabouts will be constructed on Pecos Street, replacing the existing signalized intersections at I-70. Construction is tentatively scheduled to begin in July and continue into fall 2013.
In addition to the projects listed above, CDOT will build four major projects along five miles of I-25 in central Denver.
• I-25 between 20th Street and Speer Boulevard: The $14.6-million FASTER safety project adds auxiliary lanes on southbound I-25 from just south of 20th Street to just south of Speer Boulevard to allow more time for motorists to enter and exit I-25. The 15th Street bridge over I-25 will also be replaced. The city of Denver has contributed funds to make improvements to Central Street that will enhance both pedestrian and bicycle safety. The project began in January and will continue through January 2014.
• I-25 over the South Platte River: This $16.4-million project replaces the I-25 bridge over the South Platte River, also known as the “Broncos Arch” bridge due to its proximity to Invesco Field. The existing bridge was originally constructed in 1951 and is one of Colorado’s poor bridges. Construction has been under way since May and will continue through August 2013.
• I-25 over Santa Fe Drive (U.S. 85): This $60-million Bridge Enterprise project replaces the I-25 bridges over Santa Fe Drive that are in poor condition and constructs a flyover ramp from northbound Santa Fe Drive to northbound I-25 to replace the current left side on-ramp and improve operations and safety for this major traffic movement. I-25 from the north end of the Broadway Viaduct to just south of Alameda Avenue will be reconstructed and realigned to provide lane continuity. Once complete, there will be four lanes in each direction of I-25 through Denver from C-470 to U.S. 36. Construction began in July and will continue through July 2013.
• I-25 at Alameda Avenue (State Highway 26): This project replaces the Alameda Avenue bridge over I-25 and reconstructs I-25 under Alameda Avenue in concrete. When complete, the Alameda Avenue bridge will be wider to accommodate full shoulders and sidewalks. This $36.9-million American Recovery and Reinvestment Act project will be complete by the end of June.
Other key projects that are already under way include: