Aspen Area Signal Improvement Project to Start Again

March 22, 2012 - Northwestern Colorado/CDOT Region 3 - Public Invited to Open House on April 2nd.

ASPEN – The Colorado Department of Transportation will re-start the traffic signal improvement project initiated last fall to upgrade the traffic signals just down-valley from Aspen and through downtown. The construction start date has been set for Monday, April 16th. The project is expected to last through the end of May.

A public open house will be held on Monday, April 2nd from 4:30 – 6:00pm at the Aspen City Council Chambers in City Hall (130 S. Galena, Aspen, Colorado). Those interested can attend the open house to learn more about the project and potential impacts to vehicle and pedestrian travel.  Representatives from CDOT and the project contractor will be on hand to answer questions.

The project involves work at all of the signalized intersections between the Aspen Airport and Galena Street, with the exception of the Cemetery Lane intersection. The work will consist of installing traffic signal loops, pedestrian push buttons, underground conduit, fiber optic cable and communications systems that will link the signals together for improved traffic management. When completed, the traffic lights will communicate with each other providing the optimal signal cycle times for real-time traffic in the corridor.

The Cemetery Lane traffic signal will not be interconnected with the other signals because it lies between the roundabout and the S-curves in Aspen, which create too many variables in traffic flow. There are currently cameras at Cemetery lane and CDOT may put detection loops in at the intersection in the future.

Almost all of the work has been completed at the intersections outside of town, reported Bill Crawford, CDOT Project Engineer. Work along the side of SH 82 will be conducted this spring and will require closure of the shoulders around the intersections from the AABC to Truscott Place.

Conversely, almost none of the work has been accomplished at the signalized intersections in downtown Aspen.

“The goal is to have traffic be affected at only one intersection at a time,” Crawford said. “The work will begin at the Aspen Street intersection and then move progressively from signal to signal.”

Each intersection will be under construction for about a week as the contractor places the traffic signal loops and bores the conduit for the signals. No asphalt cuts should be necessary because the conduits will be placed with a boring machine.

The project was contracted to W.L. Contractors of Arvada, Colorado for $675,000.

TRAFFIC/PEDESTRIAN IMPACTS: Only shoulder closures are anticipated outside of Aspen. Some lane closures in downtown Aspen will be required to accomplish the work. However, every effort will be made to minimize the impact on traffic during the project. Up-valley lanes will remain open with no traffic impacts until 9 a.m. each morning, Monday through Friday. Down-valley lanes will not experience lane closures after 3:30 pm each day. Traffic may be impacted beyond those hours on weekends, however.

Travelers should be prepared to experience the following conditions within the construction zone:

  • Short traffic stops may occur and will be kept to a minimum;
  • People using the signalized intersections in the project area may also experience temporary lane closures or lane re-configurations as the project progresses. Traffic control will be in place at these areas to guide pedestrian and vehicle movements;
  • Pedestrians should note that while there will be some work on sidewalks, business access will be open at all times;
  • Parking will be closed on Main Street and the half-blocks of side streets when intersections are under construction. The City of Aspen will give a 72-hour notice of parking restrictions before work commences.

CDOT and W.L. Contractors greatly appreciate your patience and cooperation while going through the work zone. Thank you for going Slow for the Cone Zone.

Those with questions or concerns about the project, or who want to receive updates on the project phasing and progress may contact Tom Newland, Public Information Manager for the project, at (970) 773-3457 or at [email protected].

Updated information regarding traffic impacts on this or other CDOT projects is available at or by calling 511. To receive project updates via e-mail, 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: choose Projects, then SH 82 Aspen to Glenwood.