Big Bump work narrows I-70 for duration of summer
Ryan Summerlin July 13, 2012
Colorado Department of Transportation crews set up shop for several more months of work on Interstate 70’s “big bump” a mile west of the Eisenhower Tunnel.
The work is expected to continue to take up one lane in each direction through October, CDOT officials said.
“The work has really jumped into high gear … now that the holiday is over,” CDOT spokesman Bob Wilson said. “It will remain in that (two-lane) configuration even through Labor Day so we can get it completed, and we hope to get it done by the end of October so we can beat the snow.”
One lane will be closed on both the east- and westbound directions of the highway, although which lane is closed will change. Currently the far left lanes are closed to allow crews to work in the center median area.
The speed limit has been lowered to 50 mph through the work zone.
The $2.5-million project is intended to stop a bump from rising in the eastbound lanes of the highway. Landslide movement under the interstate has caused the disturbance in the road to reappear even after crews pave over it.
The current project is expected to be a long-term fix for the issue. A similar solution was implemented on the westbound lanes of the highway in 2010 and has been fairly successful so far.
In the Wildernest area, the Buffalo Mountain Metropolitan District is also set to launch a major road reconstruction and repair project on Ryan Gulch Road next week.
The construction will cause delays during work hours from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. Friday.
There will be traffic control in place throughout the project, and Ryan Gulch Road will be reduced to one lane periodically, causing average wait times of approximately five minutes.
One overnight closure is expected at the top of Ryan Gulch Road, but drivers will be able to access all properties, according to a statement from the Metro District.
With the still relatively high fire danger, the metro district is working with local emergency agencies on evacuation procedures, according to the statement.
Lake Dillon Fire-Rescue will visit the construction area daily to monitor emergency access.
The contractor on the project is on alert to clear the road of all equipment quickly to allow access to the road in the event of an evacuation.
The Town of Breckenridge has fully completed a revitalization project on Main Street.
US Highway 24 over Tennessee Pass is closed indefinitely as CDOT crews evaluate an old, underground railroad that caused a sinkhole in the area.
“We’re trying to determine what the next steps are going to be to take care of that sinkhole and make sure there are not any other sinkholes that could open up in the foreseeable future,” Wilson said.
The road is closed to both bikes and traffic, and a detour route is set up along Highway 91.
The detour adds approximately one hour for drivers headed to Leadville from eastbound I-70, although typically anyone making that drive from the Summit County side would take 91 anyway.
CDOT is also doing grout work on the eastbound bore of the Eisenhower Tunnel, causing single lane closures at night. The closures are not expected to cause significant traffic impacts.