Flood Mitigation Work begins on Ute Pass

February 12, 2014 - Southeastern County/CDOT Region 2 - EL PASO COUNTY – A project designed to improve water flow under U.S. 24 began this morning on Ute Pass.

The Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) is preparing to install an extra-large concrete box culvert, designed to carry excessive amounts of water.  Measuring 24 feet wide and 10 feet high, the culvert will be ten times larger than the 72 inch metal pipe currently under the highway.

Currently, the left lane of eastbound and westbound Highway 24 is closed for one mile until 6 p.m. at Waldo Canyon, about one mile west of Manitou Springs.Tomorrow and Friday, the lanes will be closed from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Beginning on Saturday, Feb. 15, eastbound U.S. 24 will be closed and all traffic shifted to the westbound lanes – one lane in each direction.  The highway will remain in this configuration for about two weeks, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.  When the eastbound side is complete, all traffic then will be moved to the eastbound lanes for another couple weeks, allowing construction to proceed on the westbound segment.

The speed limit will be reduced to 35 mph and vehicles wider than 12 feet will not be allowed to travel through the work zone.

PLEASE NOTE: Drivers should expect possible slowdowns or delays through the area during the morning and evening rush hours.

“This is another one of the many steps we’re taking to help mitigate the flooding that’s been occurring on Ute Pass during the rainy season,” said CDOT Resident Engineer Dave Watt.  “Placing an oversized culvert will allow the high water, debris and mud to pass under the highway, not over it, removing one more hazard to the traveling public.”

The project is scheduled for completion by April 30, 2014.

Wildcat Construction Co. of Colorado Springs is the prime contractor for the $1.4 million project.