Design Options

Ridge Road Questions

31st, 30th and 26th Streets Questions

21st Street Questions

8th and I-25 Questions

General Questions:

1. We’ve seen around 18 Design Options that are still on the table. How are you going to narrow the Design Options down?

Answer: The team will use the design option evaluation matrix to analyze and compare each design option. This matrix will analyze values of such issues as floodplains, size and location of property remainders, number of historical properties disturbed, traffic operation characteristics, etc. Using these values each design option can be “ranked” in performance and degree of impact allowing for a selection of the most reasonable design option at each location.

2. The Organization of Westside Neighbors has proposed a freeway which was already rejected in the process. Does that mean the freeway alternative is back on the table?

Answer: No. Having said “no,” however, does not mean their option is being discarded. The team is analyzing each component of the suggested plan using the design option evaluation matrix. These are the same criteria being used to analyze all of the design options.

Coincidently, several elements within the OWN plan have been incorporated into the other design options. These include the extension of Broadway between 8th and 21st Streets and an overpass at 14th or 15th Street connecting into Gold Hill Mesa.

3. Elevation drawings at interchanges? Can these be provided?

Answer: The team will be providing elevation drawings for the recommended design option.

4. Seems like 45 mph is low when you can drive 45 through construction areas.

Answer: One of the comments the team heard concerning the design speed of the Expressway alternative is that 40mph is too slow. The team has considered the comment, found good merit in implementing a higher speed and thus is increasing the posted speed of the Expressway alternative to 50 mph.

5. Because of the flood plain, we understand that the highway will need to be raised much of the way. How much higher will the through lanes be at their lowest point and at their highest point?

Answer: There really is only one segment that may require raising of the existing elevation due to the 100 year flood elevation. This segment is from 21st Street east toward 14th Street. To get US 24 out of the floodplain this segment may need to be raised approximately 4 feet. Other areas that will require modification to address floodplain issues are on the side streets where they cross Fountain Creek.

Ridge Road:

6. Could an interchange be built at Ridge Road and 31st? It wouldn’t make sense to have intersection then interchange and then intersections.

Answer: Interchanges could be constructed at both locations if traffic volumes warranted this action. If an interchange were considered at 31st Street, the close proximity of 31st Street to 26th Street would raise some issues that might change the plans being considered for the 26th Street intersection. At this time, traffic operations for the 2030 planning horizon indicate an acceptable level of service for the intersection design option and an intersection would be suggested for 31st Street. However, new traffic data for 2035 could change these findings.

31st, 30th and 26th Streets:

7. On Option #9, what is the LOS when US 24 is reduced to 2 lanes east and 2 lanes west?

Answer: These intersections would operate at a level of service “F” during the PM peak hours.

8. On Option #25, why can’t US 24 go over 31st and 26th, eliminating the access issues. Also Option #26 at 21st Street.

Answer: US 24 could go over at both cross street locations. Alternatives are currently being considered at 21st Street that carry US 24 over 21st Street.

9. Do all the proposed options for 26th Street allow access to and from West Colorado Avenue?

Answer: Yes

10. Why are 26th and 31st combined? Different problems for each.

Answer: The graphic is combined only for ease of representation. Also, since these locations are very closely spaced, during the alternatives development phase, grade separated options that were considered at either 26th or 31st Street had a direct impact on improvements needed for the entire roadway section.

11. Seems you’re more interested in trails than moving traffic. Option 6: Too much traffic on 31st Street. 14th – 15th Street access, is it east and west or west only? What is a flyover?

a. Safety, Accessibility, and Mobility is one of the key elements in the US 24 Plan. Therefore, there is interest in not only traffic mobility but non-motorized mobility. At this time we are focused on traffic and non-motorized users associated with the roadway. We know we must consider access to existing trail systems as well as future trail systems and are prudent in analyzing the issues associated with trail systems in relation to the overall US24 plan.

b. Thank you for the comment. The design option evaluation matrix will take into account the additional traffic that is routed to 31st.

c. Access to/from US24 to 14th/15th is via frontage roads to/from 8th Street for vehicles traveling to and from the east only. The proximity of 21st Street makes access to/from the west non-viable. The only access that could be provided to the west would be a frontage road system which would require additional property acquisition and environmental impacts.

d. A flyover ramp is a non-stop freeway system to freeway system connection. An example would be the northbound I25 to westbound C470 ramp connections.

21st Street:

12. Do Options 22 and 23 (for 21st Street) include widening of bridge on 21st, just north of interchange?

Answer: Yes, widening of 21st Street, including the bridge over the creek, would need to be widened to accommodate the turning lanes, etc.

13. If design #22 could be used, would 18th Street hook up to 19th Street? And later become one way to Uintah and 21st one way from Uintah?

Answer: The possibility exists for this scenario. However, the option would need to be addressed by the City of Colorado Springs. The option is entirely independent of actions taken on the US 24 project and would be a project for the City of Colorado Springs as the US24 West project does not need to address this traffic system.

8th and I-25:

14. I25/8th Street: It appears Option 21 is the best option, yet LOS is at E for 2 movements – can you improve design to meet standards at 8th Street?

Answer: The operations and configuration have been optimized as much as possible. Without significant access changes to I25 and 8th Street the two movements cannot be improved beyond LOS E. Since 8th Street is not a freeway facility, improving the LOS of E with significant capacity changes like adding free-flow flyover ramps would result in greater impacts to the surrounding land uses and only transfer the capacity problem to adjacent intersections both north and south of 8th Street. All of the alternatives being considered show the overall operation of the facility at a LOS D.

15. Can we make the Cimarron Bridge fit with these designs?

Answer: Yes, alignments have been designed to work in conjunction with the alignment of Cimarron as it heads into downtown Colorado Springs. The existing Cimarron bridge over Fountain Creek would be replaced with the US24 West project. The existing Cimarron bridge over Conejos and the railroad tracks would not be replaced by the US24 West project.

16. Which option complies with the existing approved E.A. for the urban diamond interchange at I-25 and Highway 24? #16, 17, 18, 19 and 20 do not seem to comply.

Answer: Design options 16, 17, 18, and 19 all comply with the I25 EA-approved interchange option at I25 and Cimarron. Design Option 20 is a design option at Ridge Road. Design option 21 is the only option that would require a configuration change to the I25 EA-approved interchange configuration. This design option 21 considers a single-point urban interchange (SPUI), versus the I25 EA-approved diamond configuration, because the SPUI improves operations at the interchange enough to eliminate the northbound I-25 to westbound 4th level flyover ramp.

17. Re: Garner at 8th Street: Signalized? If signalized, the traffic will back up into US 24. With intervening driveways to businesses, there is not enough room between US 24 and Garner. Signal would create gridlock. Have you done vehicle traffic counts and measured distance between Garner and US 24 and between Garner and Moreno?

Answer: Alternative 18 is the only option where the intersection would be blocked by the queue. Specifically, the northbound right turn movement would block the intersection. The other options would work fine.

18. None of the design options at 8th Street/I-25 meet standards. How will you handle that?

Answer: The 8th Street interchange options contain some movements that would operate at a level of service “E”. Please see the Answer for Question 14.