CDOT will begin resurfacing US 40 via Craig in May

Last summer, heavy equipment from Duran & Pearce Contractors tore up the sidewalk at the corner of Yampa Avenue and Victory Way. Work to resurface 12 miles of US Highway 40 through Craig will begin in mid-May.
Cuyler Meade Archive/Craig Press

A 12-mile resurfacing project of U.S. Highway 40 through downtown Craig is undergoing planned construction in the city this summer.

In mid-May, the Colorado Department of Transportation will begin a project to mill the old roadway and overlay it with new asphalt from mile marker 92 east of Craig to mile marker 80 on the west side from the city.

“Traffic impacts will begin then or shortly after,” said Elise Thatcher, spokeswoman for CDOT in northwest Colorado. “When we have everything in place, we will ask motorists to anticipate delays of 20 minutes.

The delay will primarily be because crews will need to have alternate one-way traffic on US 40 for parts of the project, Thatcher said. The project will also replace a traffic light and improve sidewalks at the intersection of the freeway and Green Street.

The construction area is part of the alternate route north of Interstate 70, if Colorado’s main corridor through the mountains is to be closed for safety reasons this summer. Last summer, landslides in Glenwood Canyon damaged I-70, often redirecting heavy traffic north.

Thatcher said the CDOT crews on this project would try to balance the desire to complete the project on schedule with the additional traffic flow through Craig in the event of a security closure.

“The goal is to manage this project in such a way that we can continue to do the work if possible, but without affecting detour traffic,” Thatcher said. “If there’s a big shutdown, what we’re going to try to do is move to work that keeps the project moving but doesn’t have that one-lane alternating shutdown.”

Craig City Manager Peter Brixius said part of the project will also replace a water main and make drainage improvements along US 40.

The city is also participating in a “devolution” with CDOT on part of a frontage road along the freeway at the western end of the city near Finley Lane, Brixius said. This means that CDOT will make improvements to the road and then hand it over to the city.

“We just think it could be better served (by the city) because it’s not a high priority for CDOT at this point,” Brixius said. “That’s a little over a mile of freeway frontage they’ll deliver after they upgrade it.”

The CDOT will also cover a portion of Yampa Avenue through the core of Craig, which will complete 2,400 feet of sidewalk improvements the city recently completed.

Brixius said Craig continues to seek multimodal funding through CDOT, so the city can explore more pedestrian improvements in hopes of eventually connecting city parks, schools, shopping areas and the neighborhood. of hospitality. An ongoing grant would improve sidewalks on both sides of Yampa Avenue, from Sixth Street to Ninth Street.

“Beyond that, we’ve talked with CDOT that we’d like to use our gear and complete a trail segment from Ninth Street to North Park,” Brixius said. “Long term, our goal is to connect all of these trail segments that we’re building.”

Eventually, this trail system hopes to connect to a whitewater park that Craig has been working on for over a year. Brixius said the city is working to obtain necessary permits and approvals from the US Army Corps of Engineers, US Fish and Wildlife Service and Colorado Parks and Wildlife.

The park would be near the Craig diversion structure on the Yampa River and would include a parking lot, bathrooms, and small amphitheater-like structures along the river. Further downstream, there will be another boat launch and more parking lots, all connected by trails.

Brixius said teams hope to start the first phase of construction in September, with the second phase coming next year.

“These are definitely multi-year projects,” Brixius said. “We have a lot of fans, incredible support across the river, (and) we’re hoping to get the grants this summer.”

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