Eastbound I-70 Mount Vernon Truck Escape Ramp Reconstruction

About the Project

Beginning in November 2023, the Colorado Department of Transportation will rebuild the existing runaway truck escape ramp located along eastbound I-70 at the Genesee Exit (Mile Post 257) in Jefferson County. The project will make the ramp more visible and robust for truck drivers to see and use in the event of an emergency such as failed brakes or mechanical breakdown as they travel down the eastbound I-70 mountain corridor into the Denver region. Since the ramp must be closed during construction, the project will take place over the winter season when hot brakes are the lowest and truckers’ speeds are reduced.

Project Benefits

  • A more robust and visible escape ramp
  • Improved advanced signage of the escape ramp ahead
  • Increased sight distance, which will give truckers more time to see the entrance and line up their vehicle to enter the escape ramp
  • Larger barriers between the ramp’s edge and the adjacent steep embankment, giving truckers additional confidence to enter the ramp
  • A pavement detection system that will trigger flashing lights on signs to notify speeding truckers to use the escape ramp
  • A better ramp design allowing for late entry should truckers miss the escape ramp entrance

Temporary Escape Ramp Closure and Traffic Impacts

  • During construction from November 2023 to May 2024, the escape ramp will be closed to all traffic and there will be no escape ramp as trucks travel down eastbound I-70 from the Eisenhower-Johnson Memorial Tunnel to the Denver metro region.
  • CDOT will set up temporary crash barrels near the escape ramp construction site should truckers need them in an emergency.
  • While there are a series of signs warning truckers of the steep grade as they travel down eastbound I-70, CDOT will take additional safety measures during the ramp’s closure for construction, including more signage and notify truckers of the existing brake cooling areas.
  • Truckers must heed the speed limit and make sure their brakes and trucks are in safe working order before heading down eastbound I-70 into Denver. More information on this project is forthcoming.
  • Minimal impacts for motorists since most of the work will take place off the interstate.

 No traffic impacts until construction begins in November 2023 

Project Facts

  • Construction Cost: Will be released once the contract is awarded
  • Contractor: Contract is expected to be awarded by the fall of 2023
  • Timeline: November 2023 – May 2024
  • Location: Eastbound I-70 Mount Vernon Escape Ramp
    • Nearest Town/City: Genesee Park
    • Mile Point(s): 257
    • County: Jefferson