Archaeology & History


Since 1974, CDOT has supported history and archaeology compliance programs, both of which are included within the framework of Cultural Resources. The Cultural Resource Program enables CDOT to meet the requirements of Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966, Section 4(f) of the Department of Transportation Act of 1966, and the Colorado State Register of Historic Places Act of 1975. These laws require that state and federal agencies take into account the effects of their projects on historic and archaeological resources. CDOT facilitates compliance with two federal laws, Section 106 and Section 4(f), on behalf of the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA). The agency also ensures compliance with the Colorado State Register of Historic Places Act when appropriate.

The historical and archaeological investigations conducted to support regulatory compliance entail the documentation, interpretation, and preservation of cultural resources that are evaluated as significant in the context of our shared historic and prehistoric heritage. Cultural resource survey and documentation are undertaken by in-house CDOT professional staff and private consultants for all state- and federally-funded transportation construction and maintenance projects.

CDOT Bridges, Colorado's Most Endangered Places

Colorado's bridges are more than just functional infrastructure, many are also historic resources that tell the story of transportation in Colorado. However, preserving and maintaining these historic structures, while also meeting modern traffic demands and safety standards, is a constant challenge. To aid in that endeavor, CDOT recently nominated a select group of historic bridges to Colorado Preservation Incorporated's Most Endangered Places Program, with the goal of building awareness for all historic bridges in the state. Bridge preservation provides an opportunity to tangibly connect the past to the present, and through this program CDOT hopes to increase statewide support for bridges as essential elements of both Colorado's infrastructure and its history.

This video provides more information on CDOT's efforts to preserve historic bridges.