CDOT and local officials celebrate the completion of the I-70 over 32nd Avenue bridge replacement project

News Release

November 14, 2023 - Denver/Central Colorado - This is the first of three bridge replacement projects in the area to complete

Jefferson County — The Colorado Department of Transportation along with contractor partner Kraemer North America and local officials celebrated the completion of the I-70 over 32nd Avenue bridge replacement project in the City of Wheat Ridge on Nov. 13. This important state-funded project was the first of several bridge replacement projects along this stretch of I-70 from 32nd Avenue to Harlan Street and is part of CDOT’s overall 10-year commitment to replace aged bridges across the region and the state. Work on this five-phase project began in February 2022 and was completed on schedule. 

I-70 bridge over 32nd Ave
Aerial shot of the new bridges at I-70 over 32nd Avenue (Photo credit: John Klippel)

“This bridge is just one example of the type of impact we have been able to achieve by leveraging historic state investments through Senate Bill 260, combined with federal ones through the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law,” said CDOT Executive Director Shoshana Lew. “It is one of several key bridge replacements along this stretch of I-70, and complements significant investments ongoing across this corridor and many others.”

Before construction, the bridges, which were built in 1968 when this portion of I-70 was first constructed, had undergone frequent maintenance and repair work and were nearing the end of their lifespans. The shoulders were narrow with no room for emergency pullouts. The new bridges have a 100-year design lifespan and widened shoulders for safer access. New safety guardrail and tensioned cable rail were also installed to maximize driver safety.

“The project team was able to demolish and rebuild these bridges without any full closures of I-70, minimizing impacts to the traveling public as much as possible,” said CDOT Denver Region Transportation Director Jessica Myklebust. “We really appreciate the patience and caution of motorists driving through while we worked to make these vital upgrades.”

“We have a lot of small businesses, neighbors, and communities that are being connected here,” said Jefferson County Commissioner Andy Kerr, “I really want to thank everyone who was a part of it- the engineers, the designers, the folks who were out here day to day planning it out, and especially the folks who ran the machinery, picked up the shovels, put the cones out for the safety of all the workers and laborers. I’m looking forward to continuing infrastructure improvements all the way through Jefferson County.”

“We are very pleased to celebrate this successful collaboration between CDOT and the City of Wheat Ridge with the opening of the I-70/West 32nd Ave. replacement bridges. These entities worked closely together during the design and construction of this project to ensure it will promote safety and forward our city’s vision for 32nd Avenue as an attractive and welcoming gateway for Wheat Ridge,” said City of Wheat Ridge Mayor Bud Starker, “We look forward to continuing our collaboration with CDOT to build transportation infrastructure that is safe and convenient to drive, walk, bike and roll throughout our city.”

With the completion of this project, the bridges at I-70 over 32nd Avenue are up to modern standards, which improves safety and supports increased traffic on the I-70 corridor. This project is the first of three bridge replacement projects to complete in the West Denver Metro area, with active construction and progress being made nearby at I-70 over Ward Road and I-70 over Harlan Street. While work continues on those nearby projects, CDOT reminds everyone to please slow down through our work zones, put down the distractions, and pay extra attention to traffic shifts and narrowed lanes.

I-70 Bridge over 32nd Ave ribbon cutting
Image: Ribbon cutting for the I-70 over 32nd Avenue bridge replacement project (left to right: Kraemer North America Project Manager Sara Aupperle, CDOT Region 1 Transportation Director Jessica Myklebust, City of Wheat Ridge Mayor Bud Starker, Former Congressman Ed Perlmutter, Jefferson County Commissioner Andy Kerr, CDOT Executive Director Shoshana Lew, CDOT Resident Engineer Cody Daigneault)