CDOT Wins Two National Awards for Outstanding Transportation Projects

July 6, 2016 - Statewide Transportation Plan - Awards highlight transportation projects that improve travel and quality of life

DENVER -- The Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) claimed two awards in a national competition showcasing excellence in projects that improve travel safety, reduce congestion and provide more mobility options. CDOT was awarded for the US 6 Bridges Design Build project in Denver and the I-70 Mountain Express Lane project between Empire and Idaho Springs.

The Western Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials, known as WASHTO, announced the winners at its conference in Laramie, Wyo. WASHTO’s membership includes 18 western states and it’s the second of four regional groups naming recipients of this year’s “America’s Transportation Awards.”

“We are thrilled to receive national recognition for these two innovative projects that are already improving the daily lives of commuters in the metro area and for mountain corridor travelers,” said Shailen Bhatt, CDOT Executive Director. “CDOT thanks all the communities and partners involved in delivering these projects that help to improve the efficiency and safety of our transportation system.”

CDOT’s $98 million project along US 6 replaced six obsolete bridges between Knox Court and I-25, and eliminated weaving movements between Federal Boulevard and I-25 to improve travel times and safety. Crews increased mobility and access to neighborhoods by adding a dedicated bike lane on the new Knox Court Bridge and by improving connections between trails and the new pedestrian bridge over 6th Avenue. This vital investment and comprehensive community outreach initiatives allowed officials to deliver 10 years’ worth of improvements in just 21 months, saving taxpayers time and money in user, construction and maintenance costs.

CDOT’s $72 million I-70 Mountain Express Lane project reduced congestion and travel along I-70 between Empire and Idaho Springs by converting the eastbound shoulder into an Express Lane during peak periods only. Through this innovative strategy, an extra travel lane can be added during peak periods, such as weekends and holidays, to guarantee a reliable travel speeds. This tactic diverts up to 900 vehicles to reduce congestion along the 13-mile corridor and adjacent frontage roads. With this project, CDOT officials are facilitating commerce, freight movement and access to recreational activities, while helping local mountain communities and saving travelers time.

About Express Lanes: Express Lanes increase roadway capacity and help to manage congestion on the highways. The use of toll pricing during peak travel times reduces delays, manages congestion and maintains reliable travel times. Express Lanes are currently open on I-25 between downtown Denver and 120th Avenue, US 36 between Denver and Boulder, and on I-70 between Idaho Springs and Empire. For more information, visit To get an ExpressToll account and pass, visit

About the High Performance Transportation Enterprise (HPTE): The HPTE operates as a government-owned, independent business within CDOT. It searches out innovative ways to finance projects to help Colorado fulfill its commitment to increase travel choices through options that include Express Lanes, transit, biking, walking and carpooling. For more information, visit

For more information about CDOT, visit