South Academy Boulevard Widening Component

About this Component

The project is led by El Paso County

General project information: Academy Boulevard is a key arterial road running north to south for approximately 15 miles through the entirety of Colorado Springs. The project area of South Academy Boulevard comprises the southern mile and a half of this arterial road from the I-25 interchange, crossing US 85/ 87, and continuing to the road’s approach to Milton Proby Parkway (which connects to CO 21).

A key corridor for commuters and inter-regional travel, as well as critical defense access and haul route for military personnel and equipment travelling between Peterson Space Force Base and Fort Carson, South Academy Boulevard has an Annual Average Daily Traffic (AADT) count of approximately 57,500 and is characterized by recurring congestion during peak hours. This road segment is a key element in the transportation corridor providing access from the east to the State Highway systems (I-25, CO 21, US 24, and CO 115), Pikes Peak Community College, Colorado Springs Airport, and Fort Carson. The project provides access to six of Fort Carson’s entrances, Gates 1-6. South Academy Boulevard provides the direct and primary access to Gates 3 and 4, through which approximately 30 percent of all of Fort Carson’s traffic enters. More than 50 percent of all westbound traffic on South Academy Boulevard during peak hours is accessing or leaving Fort Carson. South Academy Boulevard is on the Pikes Peak Area Council of Government’s Congestion Mitigation Plan as both a Strategic Corridor and a Regional Corridor, and it is located on the National Highway System.

The work along this corridor includes:

  • Widening South Academy Boulevard along this mile and a half stretch
  • Scour protection to improve the resilience of bridges crossing Fountain Creek
  • Widening bridges crossing over Bradley Road
  • Noise abatement treatments
  • Draining improvements
  • Lighting improvements
  • Various other infrastructure work resulting in three dedicated lanes of traffic in each direction along this section of the corridor

Work this Week & Lane Closures South Academy Widening

Project Facts

  • Construction Cost: $161 million total for all components, with contributions from Colorado Department of Transportation, El Paso County, Pikes Peak Rural Transportation Authority, and a federal BUILD grant.
  • Contractor: SEMA Construction, Inc.
  • Timeline: Construction start summer 2023; Completion early 2026
  • Location: South Academy Boulevard
    • Nearest Town/City: Colorado Springs
    • Mile Point(s): 1-4
    • County(s): El Paso

Project Benefits

Road Widening and Overlay

South Academy Boulevard will be widened from its current configuration of two lanes in each direction to three lanes in each direction. The widening will be from just west of South Academy Boulevard’s interchange with I-25 to just south of the Milton E. Proby Parkway. Both the inside and outside shoulders will also be widened in both directions along this alignment of South Academy Boulevard. Widening of the roadway provides enhanced safety and mobility for motorists.

Road Overlay

A mill and overlay will be applied at a 5” depth on the roadway and 2” depth on the bridges. Overlays provide a smoother surface which offers safer driving, and can and greatly extend the life of the asphalt pavement.

Sound Walls

Sound walls along South Academy Boulevard are anticipated between the Hartford Street overpass and the approach to the bridges crossing Fountain Creek. Sound walls can help reduce the impact of loud highway noises on the surrounding environment.

Bridge Scour Work

The two bridges along South Academy Boulevard which cross Fountain Creek and are located approximately one-half mile southwest of the junction CO 85. The Fountain Creek Regional Trail which runs under theses bridges is part of the larger Front Range Trail system proposed to stretch from Wyoming to New Mexico. Fountain Creek Regional Trail is one of the most used bike and pedestrian trails in El Paso County.

Work to address these critical bridges includes repair of foundations, and installation of riprap at all piers and abutments of the bridge to mitigate further scour of the Fountain Creek channel. These repairs will improve the bridges’ scour rating and improve resiliency, ensuring there will be no movement or settlement of the bridge during major storm events, thereby mitigating the need to close the bridge for inspection and avoiding delays associated with an unplanned closure.

Work Schedule:

  • Work will last through early 2026
  • Normal working hours are 7 a.m. to 9 p.m., Monday through Friday
  • Some overnight and weekend work is expected

Traffic Impacts:

Motorists can expect the following impacts during the period of construction:

  • Single nighttime lane closures, ramp closures, and lane shifts on South Academy Boulevard during the week. There are no planned closures during weekends or holidays.
  • The speed limit in this area will be reduced.
  • Slight traffic delays are expected.
  • Visit our Weekly Traffic Impacts page for travel information updated weekly.
  • tour routes
  • Refer to for real-time travel conditions and road closures