I-70 Westbound Twin Tunnels (Veterans Memorial Tunnels)
In march of this year the Colorado State Legislature proposed a bill to rename the I-70 Twin Tunnels to Veterans Memorial Tunnels. This bill was passed in April and as of the conclusion of this project, the Twin Tunnels will officially switch names. Until that time, CDOT will continue to use both Twin Tunnels and Veterans Memorial Tunnels when discussing this project so as not to create confusion.
Click here to listen to the recording of the March 13 telephone town hall call.
The Westbound I-70 Twin Tunnels project will widen the westbound bore of the tunnel in Idaho Springs to about 53-feet. This will accommodate a third lane along westbound I-70 when the highway is eventually widened. Unlike the recent work done along eastbound I-70 to add a third highway lane from Idaho Springs to the bottom of Floyd Hill, this project will only widen the tunnel to accommodate a future third lane. It does not include expanding westbound I-70 to three lanes at this time.
Construction updates can be found in the Travel Alerts or Road Work Alerts at www.cotrip.org so you can plan your trips accordingly in this area, delays are expected!
There will be short-term lane closures to finish pouring sections of the concrete median barrier and retaining wall. Additional work to be done in 2015 to finish the project includes restoring County Road 314 and building retaining walls along this roadway, making enhancements to Clear Creek and building an enhance trailhead area alongside the river. This work is scheduled to be done in the summer of 2015.
- During the week of Jan. 19, there will be a single left lane closure along eastbound I-70 each day from mile marker 241 (the east Idaho Springs exit) through the Veterans Memorial Tunnels.
- This eastbound lane closure is scheduled to be in effect Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day.
- Two eastbound lanes will remain open while crews do finish work at the tunnels.
- On Monday, Jan. 19, and Tuesday, Jan. 20, there will also be a single right lane closure along westbound I-70 between mile marker 243 (the Central City Parkway exit) and the tunnel.
- This westbound lane closure is scheduled to be in effect from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. each of these days.
- Doing this project now saves an estimated $5 million to $7 million because the equipment, resources and detour needed to do the work are already in place.
- With a wider, brighter tunnel entrance, the traffic flow on westbound I-70 will improve as motorists will be less likely to slow down when approaching the tunnel.
- Driver safety will also improve with the removal of rock from the walls above the tunnel portals and along the north side of the highway along the outside each portal.
- This project sets the stage for future westbound I-70 improvements which may use the extra lane for general purpose travel, peak period travel and/or transit.