CDOT begins permanent repairs on CO 133

Project Update

August 9, 2023 - Northwestern Colorado - Temporary bridge will remain in place through culvert construction
Image of CO 133 temporary bridge
The temporary bridge over Bear Creek at Mile Point 16 has been open to motorists since June 19

Delta & Gunnison Counties — Crews mobilized on Monday, August 7, to begin the permanent repairs to CO 133 at Mile Point 16. The team will start by installing water pumps to divert the water flowing through Bear Creek in order to begin excavation. A critical element of the work is to ensure the Gunnison River and Bear Creek are protected from contamination and complete the restoration of the landscape due to work being completed by the contractor.

By mid week it’s anticipated that a delivery of the pipe to replace the damaged culvert will arrive. Traffic will continue to utilize the temporary bridge structure while work is performed below the roadway surface. Traffic impacts for permanent repairs are expected to be minimal.

Once the culvert is replaced, the final phase will be to remove the temporary bridge and begin the prep work for final paving and final striping.

During this final phase, traffic may be impacted down to a single lane. This is expected to be short term.

It is anticipated that all work will be completed by Nov. 17, 2023.

History of the Incident

A safety closure started on Tuesday, May 2 at Mile Points 14-19 due to significant road damage. The damage originally began with a small sinkhole and lane closure during the weekend of Saturday, April 29. Major flooding from nearby Bear Creek early the week of May 1 filled a culvert with debris and flooded the roadway, pushing the culvert through the other side of the road and eroded roadway embankment, causing the road to collapse. The damage and safety closure are near Somerset, just north of Paonia. Access to Somerset from the north, via CO 133 McClure Pass, continues to be open.

On Monday, June 19, crews opened a temporary bridge on CO 133 to traffic. The reopening of the roadway took place 10 days ahead of the contractual deadline which was originally set for late June. Contractor R.L. Wadsworth began the temporary bridge construction on May 23. The process for this type of prefabricated bridge usually requires four months, but crews expedited the installation.

Traffic Impacts

The temporary bridge has two lanes and the speed limit is 40 mph. Commercial motor vehicle traffic is restricted to 85,000 lbs and 11-foot width.

Project Information

For additional information about this project:

  • Call the project information line at 970-279-3309
  • Email the project team at: [email protected]

Know Before You Go

Travelers are urged to “know before you go.” Gather information about weather forecasts and 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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