Geologic Project Starts Next Week along Highway 285

July 29, 2011 - Central Eastern Colorado/CDOT Region 1 - Work requires occasional lane closures near Kenosha Pass

PARK COUNTY – The Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) begins work on Monday, August 1, to stabilize a mountain slope along U.S. 285, about six miles north of Kenosha Pass.

CDOT plans to keep traffic moving through the project area by shifting traffic slightly east. However, to maintain traffic safety during scaling operations, occasional traffic stops up to 15 minutes can be expected as flaggers alternate northbound and southbound traffic on U.S. 285, Monday through Thursday, from 6 a.m. until dark, and on Fridays, from 6 a.m. until noon.

“We realized mitigation work needed to be done there when, earlier this month, some rock had fallen onto the highway,” said CDOT Program Engineer Peter Kozinski.  “When we investigated further, we realized the hillside above the roadway had shifted six to 10 feet, which caused the rockfall.  The shifting hillside also caused the highway shoulder to heave upward several feet.”

Scaling operations were undertaken on Friday, July 15, to remove loose rock above the highway.  CDOT also installed meters to monitor and measure the hillside movement.  The meters show it moving ½ to 1½ inches each day.

“Our geologic experts and CDOT staff decided that even though the slope isn’t in immediate danger of failing, we needed to go to work right away to stabilize the slope since the safety of the traveling public, along with the roadway, could be at risk,” added Kozinski.

CDOT plans to remove material from the top of the slide area to lessen the weight on the slope and then use the material to strengthen the bottom of the slope, adjacent to the highway.  It is expected to take four to six weeks to complete but the schedule could be impacted if additional mitigation is required.

Kelley Trucking of Golden, CO. is the contractor the $1.2 million project.

Speed limits will be reduced so motorists are reminded to please Slow for the Cone Zone, stay alert and pay attention to and obey all work zone/advisory signs and flaggers.

Traffic information about this or other CDOT projects is on the website, by calling 511 or via e-mail.  For e-mail updates, visit and click on the cell-phone icon in the upper right-hand corner.  The link takes you to a list of items you can subscribe to, including Southwest Colorado (Everything West of I-25 and South of I-70).