Big Bump Project Moving into High Gear Next Week

July 6, 2012 - Central Eastern Colorado/CDOT Region 1 - SUMMIT COUNTY – Work leveling the landslide formation on Interstate 70, known as the “Big Bump,” about one mile west of the Eisenhower/Johnson Memorial Tunnel (EJMT), shifts to full-time construction on Monday, July 9.

Over the last few weeks, the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) has installed concrete barrier at the site, allowing the lanes to be realigned around the work zone.  The third, eastbound lane has been open all week to minimize impacts for 4th of July week travelers but beginning Monday, traffic will be reduced from three to two lanes in each direction, remaining in that configuration 24 hours a day, seven days a week, through October.

Some traffic slowing can be expected through the area for the duration of the project, especially on weekends through Labor Day.  Vehicles weighing more than 26,000 pounds are required to travel in the right lane on eastbound I-70, from Silverthorne to the EJMT.

“We’re attempting to mitigate the Big Bump by drilling 5-foot diameter holes, about 20-feet deep and then filling them with a lightweight concrete material,” said CDOT West Program Engineer Peter Kozinski.  “Over the years, as we’ve attempted to smooth out the road heaving by paving this segment, more than 6-feet of asphalt has accumulated at this natural depression since the 1970s.  This mitigation, which is actually a safety project, is attempting to reduce the downward pressure from those previous paving operations and fill underground voids that have developed over the years.”

FASTER – Funding Advancements for Surface Transportation and Economic Recovery – is fully funding the $2.2 million project.  Monies collected from vehicle registration fees are used for critical construction, reconstruction, or maintenance safety projects the Transportation Commission, a county or municipality determine are needed to enhance the safety of a state highway, county road, or city street.

The project also involves rock mitigation work, about four miles west of the Big Bump.  Crews will be installing draped mesh and barrier along the slope area above westbound I-70.  It will involve lane closures and possible traffic stops.  CDOT will be distributing information regarding impacts to traffic before rock work gets underway in late July or early August.

Structures Inc. of Englewood, Colo., is the project’s prime contractor.

Weekly lane closure information about this and other 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, including I-70 West, Denver to Glenwood Springs.