News

US 36 Phase 1 Bikeway Grand Opening Celebration on Bike to Work Day

June 24, 2015 - Denver Metro/CDOT Region 1 - Community Members Come Together for Ribbon Cutting and Celebration as Bikeway Opens.

US36 Bike Path Opening 2015BROOMFIELD, CO – The Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) celebrated the completion of the first phase of the US 36 Express Lanes commuter bikeway today with community members and project partners at a grand opening ceremony. A ribbon cutting signified the opening of phase 1 of the bikeway, which runs from Westminster to Interlocken in Broomfield.  

“We are thrilled to announce the opening of the first phase of the bikeway,” said CDOT Executive Director Shailen Bhatt. “Coloradans are looking for choice along this corridor, and we are glad to offer cycling as an additional mode of transportation to help people get where they need to go. The US 36 region is home to many world-class athletes and people who are focused on making healthy choices. This bikeway is a perfect complement to the state’s focus on wellness and connecting to the outdoors.”

The first phase of the bikeway is 11 miles long. When Phase 2 is completed in 2016, the entire length of the bikeway will be 18 miles, connecting Denver to Boulder. It’s meant for commuters, not just recreational riders. There are a variety of safety features, such as 2-foot wide shoulders and 6-inch concrete for a smooth and comfortable ride. It will connect to the existing trails system.

“It’s an exciting time for the US 36 corridor,” said 36 Commuting Solutions Director Audrey DeBarros. “Historically, Bike to Work Day is the Denver-metro region’s effort to promote cycling as a way to commute. Having the US 36 bikeway open on the same day as Bike to Work Day is an important reminder that there are many choices to enhance mobility on US 36, today and in the future.”

“It’s important for our community to have this bikeway offered as an alternative mode of transportation, in addition to driving in the Express Lanes or taking the bus,” said Westminster Mayor Herb Atchison. Broomfield City Councilwoman Sharon Tessier added, “We get lots of sunshine here in Colorado. The bikeway will encourage our community to bike to work now that they have a safe, dependable, and healthy alternative.”

The grand opening celebration provided more information about the bikeway and the project, and also gave attendees an opportunity to give back to their community. The US 36 Express Lanes Project took donations in the form of new or used bikes, bike helmets and accessories to give to Community Cycles, a non-profit in Boulder that provides low-cost refurbished bikes and accessories to kids, families and cyclists within the US 36 community.

The US 36 Express Lanes Project, which began in summer 2012, also offers an Express Lanes option where High Occupancy Vehicles (HOV) can use the Express Lanes for free, or Single Occupancy Vehicles (SOV) can choose to pay a toll. In addition to the Express Lanes, the project boasts the state’s first Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system, Bus on Shoulder (BOS) system, Active Traffic Management (ATM) system, and of course, the commuter-specific bikeway along the highway.

Phase 1 of US 36 is open to drivers and toll collection is currently being waived while the lanes undergo a brief testing period until Wednesday, July 22 to ensure the tolling equipment and technology is working properly for all vehicles. Drivers are encouraged to get a pass before July 22, by visiting www.expresstoll.com. There, drivers can choose the pass that is right for them and their Express Lane usage. Bus riders can get information on passes at www.rtd-denver.com.

Phase 2 of US 36, from 88th Street in Louisville/Superior to Table Mesa in Boulder, is still under construction and will be open in early 2016. Phase 2 includes rebuilding the general purpose lanes, adding an Express Lane in each direction, and making improvements to three bridges, including McCaslin, which will accommodate the area’s first Diverging Diamond Interchange. Additionally, Phase 2 includes construction of the final segment of the commuter bikeway into Boulder. Phase 2 is being built in partnership with RTD, HPTE and Plenary Roads Denver as CDOT’s first Public-Private Partnership. Plenary – a consortium of Plenary Group, Ames Construction, Granite Construction, HDR, Transfield Services, and Goldman Sachs – is designing, building and financing Phase 2, and will operate and maintain Phase 1 and 2 and the I-25 Express Lanes into Denver.

For more information about the project, please visit www.codot.gov/projects/US36ExpressLanes. For an interactive bike map of the bikeway and the existing trail system, visit http://36commutingsolutions.org/commuting-us-36/commute-options/bikewalk/bikelinks-36/.

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