Project Overview

Project Facts

  • Cost: $497 million
  • Contractor: Ames Granite Joint Venture
  • Timeline: July 2012 through winter 2016
US 36 Express Lanes at Northwest Parkway

The US 36 Express Lanes Project was a multi-modal project led by CDOT and the Regional Transportation District (RTD) to reconstruct US 36 from Federal Boulevard to Table Mesa Drive in Boulder.

Project Details:

  • Crews built an Express Lane in each direction on US 36, in addition to the two free general-purpose lanes.
  • The Express Lanes accommodate high-occupancy vehicles (HOV) and Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) (which started running in January 2016), and tolled vehicles.
  • In addition, the project replaced several bridges, built a commuter bikeway, added BRT improvements, and installed Intelligent Transportation Systems (ITS) for tolling, transit and traveler information, and incident management.
  • Phase 1—from Federal Boulevard to 88th Street in Louisville/Superior—opened in July 2015. Phase 2—from 88th Street to Table Mesa Drive in Boulder—was completed in 2016. Toll commencement began on March 30, 2016.

Corridor History

US 36 between Denver and Boulder opened as a toll road in 1951. The toll road bonds were paid off early and the tolling infrastructure was removed in 1968. When it was built, this four lane road had only one interchange between Denver and Boulder. In response to rapid population growth, there are now 10 interchanges along US 36 between I-25 and Boulder. However, the number of main through-lanes has remained at four.

In December 2009, CDOT completed an Environmental Impact Statement that described preferred alternative improvements to the corridor, which would be implemented in the future as funding became available. The main elements in the preferred alternative include one buffer-separated managed lane in each direction, bus rapid transit (BRT) ramp stations, auxiliary lanes between most interchanges, and a bikeway.

These two projects will be the first steps in implementing improvements described in the US 36 Environmental Impact Statement.

US 36 Public-Private Partnership: Understanding the Facts

The public asked CDOT for more details about the upcoming public-private partnership (P3) for the US 36 corridor.  We wanted to take this opportunity to explain what is happening with the P3 and the contract as there has been a lot of misinformation released. Read more here...

US 36 Public-Private Partnership Concession Agreement

CDOT released the concession agreement for the US 36 corridor on February 14, 2014, upon further discussion with its partner Plenary Roads Denver.  The document contains the contract provisions, standards of service and other agreements to which each agency will be held.  It also includes 27 schedules, which describe agreements ranging from maintenance, to construction requirements. Four of the schedules are summarized at the request of Plenary Roads Denver due to the proprietary information. View the documents.