CDOT celebrates major milestone on final 2013 flood repair project

Travel Advisory

May 27, 2022 - Northeastern Colorado - Colorado Highway 7 closure reopened at 4 p.m. on Thursday

Boulder County — On Thursday, May 26, the Colorado Department of Transportation and Kiewit Infrastructure Co. celebrated a major milestone in announcing the reopening of Colorado Highway 7 as part of the Colorado Highway 7 Lower Project, from Lyons to Raymond. With the reopening of CO 7, CDOT and the state of Colorado are one step closer to the completion of all 2013 flood repair projects, as this marks the final infrastructure project repairing and revitalizing a state highway after damage from the 2013 floods.

To celebrate this milestone, the project team opened the canyon to cyclists and other attendees for a sneak peek canyon tour of what’s ahead once construction is complete in November 2022. Project representatives from CDOT, United States Forest Service, Federal Highway Administration and Kiewit kicked off the event at the project site with formal speaking remarks, followed by cycling and van tours of the canyon.

Innovations prepared during design and construction provided significant benefits to air and water quality in Boulder County. Construction excavation and fill activities eliminated 51,000 cubic yards of waste material, reduced heavy haul traffic by 500,000 vehicle miles traveled, eliminated 1,270 metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions, and created a net-zero waste project.

As promised, CO 7 reopened to motor vehicle traffic on May 26 at 4 p.m.. just in time for Memorial Day weekend. The road will remain closed to bicyclists until project completion in November 2022. Since Sept. 20, 2021, CO 7 has been closed between mile points 23.3 – 29.6, with scheduled open hours of 6 – 8 a.m. and 4 – 7 p.m. to allow residents and commuters through. Thanks to the cooperation and flexibility of the community, crews were able to efficiently rebuild a safer and more resilient roadway in a shorter amount of time.

“CDOT would like to thank and express our gratitude to Boulder County, US Forest Service, Kiewit and their partners, and the Lyons and CO 7 canyon residents,” said CDOT Executive Director Shoshana Lew. “Your planning and collaboration together as a community over a 3-year period kept this project moving forward and we are one step closer to completing the final 2013 flood recovery project.”

Although the full roadway closure was lifted by 4 p.m. on Thursday, May 26, construction impacts such as single-lane closures and intermittent travel delays will continue, and cycling access will remain closed until November 2022.

For additional project information and the list of speaker's from today's event, view our media kit.

Project Background

The goals of this project are to maintain access during future flood events, build a safe system accommodating multi-modal transportation options and work in harmony with ecological river functions in the corridor.

The permanent repair project will:

  • Resurface and repair approximately 14 miles of roadway
  • Rehabilitate several miles of the St. Vrain Creek disturbed during the emergency repairs
  • Improve multi-modal mobility options along the corridor
  • Build in resiliency to improve future emergency access during floods

This is the state’s final 2013 flood recovery permanent repair project. The canyon sustained significant damage during the 2013 disaster, with 9 miles of roadway severely damaged or lost entirely, and debris flows that prevented access for nearly 2 1/2 months. An emergency repair project reestablished traffic and operations quickly but did not complete repairs to final grades or restore the highway to appropriate transportation safety standards. This is a $55 million to $60 million 2013 Emergency Relief (ER) project that is fully supported by federal emergency relief funds.

Know Before You Go

Travelers are urged to “know before you go.” Gather information about weather forecasts, anticipated travel impacts, and current road conditions prior to hitting the road. CDOT resources include:

Remember: Slow For The Cone Zone

The following tips are to help you stay safe while traveling through maintenance and construction work zones.

  • Do not speed in work zones. Obey the posted speed limits.
  • Stay Alert! Expect the unexpected.
  • Watch for workers. Drive with caution.
  • Don't change lanes unnecessarily.
  • Avoid using mobile devices such as phones while driving in work zones.
  • Turn on headlights so that workers and other drivers can see you.
  • Be especially alert at night while driving in work zones.
  • Expect delays, especially during peak travel times.
  • Allow ample space between you and the car in front of you.
  • Anticipate lane shifts and merge when directed to do so.
  • Be patient!

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