CDOT studies I-25 traffic solutions

Tammy Kranz
Posted 5/18/12

There’s got to be a way to unclog the arteries that pulse with traffic throughout the Interstate 25 corridor in the north metro area. To begin …

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CDOT studies I-25 traffic solutions


There’s got to be a way to unclog the arteries that pulse with traffic throughout the Interstate 25 corridor in the north metro area.

To begin identifying traffic-clot busters, the Colorado Department of Transportation is conducting a Planning Environmental Linkage (PEL) study of the corridor area from U.S. Highway 36 north to State Highway 7. The department is looking for both short- and long-term solutions.

Officials with the Colorado Department of Transportation hosted an open house May 10 at the Northglenn Recreation Center to inform the public about the PEL study and solicit ideas from residents and local officials.

PEL is an approach to transportation decision-making that considers environmental, community and economic goals early in the planning stage, and carries them through project development design and construction.

“The purpose of the study is to identify things that will help reduce congestion, reduce travel time and improve safety,” said Jay Hendrickson, a resident engineer with CDOT.

Participants at the open house got to look over several charts that outlined the issues in the I-25 corridor and talk to CDOT officials.

One of the charts showed crash frequencies of the corridor, and the area near 84th Avenue was noted as having a particularly high percentage — 15-17 percent more crashes per year than expected.

“There could be some geometry issues, but we don’t know,” Hendrickson said.

Hendrickson said geometry issues include sight and weaving distance. Weaving is when a motorist has to cross several lanes of traffic to get to an interchange. He said that CDOT is collecting data right now to pinpoint the reasons for the high incidence of accidents and come up with solutions.

Fred Sandal, a member of the technical advisory committee with the Denver Regional Council of Governments (DRCOG), lives in Frederick and said he drives the I-25 corridor often.

“The bottleneck areas are causing the problem,” he said. “The big challenge is to find the funding to address these needs.”

State and local officials have submitted an application for TIGER (Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery) monies to help fully fund a toll lane in each direction on I-25 from U.S. 36 to 120th Avenue. The project would involve using the existing pavement of the inside shoulders to extend the toll lanes. The total project stands at $44 million, and CDOT submitted a $15-million grant application for TIGER funding in March. Officials expect to hear back in June. With the money from TIGER and local matches, the toll lane could be built in 2015.

CDOT officials said they will collect more data from traffic studies and hope to come back to the public for another open house in October to present long-term solutions and projected costs.


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