Breckenridge: Coyne Valley Road repairs to take at least three weeks |

Breckenridge: Coyne Valley Road repairs to take at least three weeks

Caddie Nath
Summit Daily News
Daily file photo/Mark FoxHigh water washed away a section of Coyne Valley Road in Breckenridge July 11.

BRECKENRIDGE – It will likely be at least another three weeks before repairs allow the Town of Breckenridge to reopen Coyne Valley Road to traffic after high water destroyed a section of the street earlier this month.

Breck public works officials say the road will be rebuilt in its original form, though it will be strong enough after the repair to withstand a similar high water situation.

“The size of the culverts (beneath the road) will be enlarged to handle that type of flood that occurred,” said town engineer Tom Daugherty. “(We) don’t know how the culverts were built to begin with. We don’t have a history on the road.”

Breckenridge officials did notice damage to the road before the washout, however, and closed it to traffic at the end of June. Sometime between 10 p.m. and midnight July 12 a culvert beneath the road gave way under the force of high water fed by heavy rain and wiped out an entire section of the street crossing the Blue River.

Since the collapse, the town and private contractors have focused on relocating nearby utility lines, which were still at risk of further damage.

Daugherty said that work is now largely complete, and crews will be able to begin installing new culverts as early as Monday.

The repair could cost the town upwards of $200,000, but public work’s officials say they’re hoping for a price tag closer to $150,000. Town officials discussed applying for state emergency funding, but town manager Tim Gagen said at a council meeting Tuesday the support is unlikely to come through because the damage was not extensive enough.

“We’re keeping track of all our records,” Daugherty said, adding that county officials are helping the town determine what emergency funding might be available.

The Breckenridge Town Council will likely appropriate money for the repairs from a town fund when final cost estimates come in, according to Daugherty.

Some in Breckenridge, including Mayor John Warner, called for the destroyed road to be replaced with a bridge, but staffers said that project will be put on hold for a few years.

The town has plans to partner with the Army Corps of Engineers to shift the river to the west, at which point a bridge might be constructed at Coyne Valley.

“The road would be out of commission for quite a long time if we were to try to do a bridge (now),” said Daugherty, whose department doesn’t even have a concept design for a bridge yet. “What we’re doing now is enough to get the road functional again and be able to let water pass through. It’s unlikely we’ll have a washout again.”

A decision on a bridge at Coyne Valley will be made when the river is shifted, but that project is likely still several years off.

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