CDOT receives approval for repair strategy on US 50 bridge near Gunnison

CDOT working with Gunnison County to secure a detour for local traffic only

April 20, 2024 - Northwest Colorado - Closure remains in place for US 50 bridge over Blue Mesa Reservoir

Montrose and Gunnison Counties — Colorado Department of Transportation bridge engineers worked today with the Federal Highway Administration to identify a path forward on temporary repairs for a closed bridge on US Highway 50 located west of Gunnison. The structure is at Mile Point 136.3 and was closed Thursday, April 18 in the interest of public safety after a safety inspection revealed cracks. The technical structure name for the bridge is K-07-B and crosses the Blue Mesa Reservoir at Dillon Pinnacles. CDOT reminds reporters to reach out to the media contact on this release with requests for photos or video of the bridge. Due to safety concerns, media are not allowed within the closure points or on the bridge. 

As part of the coordination to carry out bridge repairs, CDOT is working to bring on Kiewit Infrastructure Co., a private sector construction contractor with unique steel bridge expertise and capability to bring additional resources to the engineering teams on-site at the bridge. CDOT continues to work towards inspection of all three critical bridge spans in addition to the repair work. 

Recognizing the US 50 closure creates a significant detour for commuters traveling between Montrose and Gunnison, CDOT this weekend prioritized getting a shorter detour route in place for local residents and commuters between the two communities. CDOT is working with Gunnison County to develop and begin implementing plans to improve a limited local detour so that it can open and carry key local traffic. As that work continues, more information is anticipated soon. A local detour could be available as early as Monday, April 22, depending on road work and conditions. 

A hotline and email continue to be in place to assist customers with questions about the closure. Anyone with questions can reach out via 970-648-4423 or [email protected]. Calls will be closely monitored and will receive a prompt reply. Information is also available on the project website at Travelers should refer to or the smartphone COtrip Planner app to plan an alternate route. 

There are two recommended detours for through travel via Interstate 70 to the north or US 160 to the south and these detours add six to eight hours of travel time. CDOT is coordinating with emergency service providers to ensure emergency response is unaffected.

Travel Impacts  

  • US 50 is closed between Montrose and Gunnison.
  • Recommended alternate routes are I-70 to the north or US 160 to the south.
  • CDOT and local agencies are working to establish a local detour.

Contact Information 

For additional information about this project, contact the project team.  

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