Applying Sustainability in Life Cycle Phases 1 and 5: Success Tracking

Protecting, preserving, and enhancing the I-70 Mountain Corridor’s Context and Core Values is everyone’s responsibility. To move toward a sustainable balance will require a collaboration of community leaders, corridor users, and those who care about the environment.  

To date, the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) has facilitated the effort to establish the Context Statement and Core Values, as well as the development of the CSS Guidance. CDOT will continue to participate as a stakeholder; build facilities consistent with the Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement (PEIS) decision document and the CSS Guidance; and maintain its existing facilities in a manner that protects, preserves, and enhances the corridor.

To track the sustainability success of the I-70 Mountain Corridor, a group or groups must exist to champion regional planning, encourage behavior changes, and further awareness of sustainability efforts. CDOT will be a partner in this collaboration.

Three major tasks have been identified as actions that are critical to the sustainability of the corridor context. These tasks are described below:

Promote regional planning and consistency by setting regional sustainability goals, thresholds, and standards.

To reach a sustainable I-70 region, coordinated planning is required throughout the length of the corridor and surrounding communities. The following list of agreements and plans, at a minimum, should be prepared and reviewed in a regional context by the sponsoring agencies in partnership with corridor stakeholders. The coordination of these plans will establish a base case for the corridor. This list should be amended as other relevant future plans are completed.

  • Corridor Partnering Agreement (proposed)
  • County master plans
  • Local municipality master plans
  • County cultural resource plans
  • Agency master plans (i.e., Arapaho National Forest Master Plan)
  • County emergency management plans
  • Corridor Aesthetic Plan
  • A Landscape Level Inventory Valued Ecosystems (ALIVE) Plan
  • Mine Waste Plan
  • Stream and Wetland Ecological Enhancement Program (SWEEP)
  • Cumulative Impact Study (PEIS)

Ask stakeholders how the I-70 Mountain Corridor improvements are progressing.

A qualitative survey would be undertaken biannually to measure community and user impressions of the ‘state of the corridor.’ The broadest group of users must be included to provide the most valid view of the corridor.

Review and consider corridor-wide Core Value indicators during regional planning.

The following indicators are suggested for collection and review by a regionally focused multi-stakeholder group. The group will review the indicators and discuss the level (high/medium/low) at which current improvements are providing sustainability.

Core Value Indicator Category Indicator
Safety Traffic Risk Annual number of fatal, injury, and property crashes with associated costs. Rate of fatal, injury, and property crashes. Animal/vehicle collisions.
Healthy Environment Environmental Impacts Population of management indicator species. Annual vehicle miles traveled (VMT). State climate change statistics.
Water Pollution Water quality statistics.
Air Pollution Air quality statistics.
Noise Pollution Noise levels.
Historic Context Land Use Impacts Annual number of cultural resource plans. Annual number of preservation projects. Counties with cultural resource programs.
Communities Land Use Impacts Average property value. Sales tax. Review Headwater Economics. (2)
Equity Percent of household income devoted to transportation. Percent of land devoted to transportation facilities. Percent of land converted to development. Human health condition indicators.
Mobility/Accessibility Travel Activity Annual person trips across the Continental Divide. Annual person miles traveled. Number of transit riders. Summary from annual meeting of motor carriers. (3)
Economic Productivity and Reliability Modal Split. Makeup of the fleet (alternative fuel vehicles. Average travel time through the corridor. Cost of shipping goods in the corridor. Percent of time devoted to daily transportation. Number, type, and duration of highway closures. Number, type, and duration of transit system shutdowns.
Overall Accessibility Number of disabled visitors. Number of skiers. Number of forest visitors. Number of Eagle Airport arrivals. Number of private taxi and shuttle services. Number of public transit route miles. Number of miles of non-motorized trails.
Aesthetics Average property value. Survey of viewshed disturbances.



  1. Categories are from Sustainable Transportation Indicators: A Recommended Research Program for Developing Sustainably Transportation Indicators and Data, by the Sustainable Transportation Indicators Subcommittee of the Transportation Research Board; Subcommittee chair Todd Litman.
  2. Review Headwaters Economics is an economic profile system summarizing demographics and economics by county.
  3. An annual meeting of motor carriers will be held to discuss what is working in the corridor and suggestions for improvements to benefit motor carriers. The group will be representative of the diverse types of carriers, from interstate trucks to local delivery, and the meeting will be hosted by the Colorado Motor Carriers.