Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) cleanup last Friday afternoon along westbound Interstate 70 following a rockslide near Idaho Springs. The slide, the second the week, closed westbound I-70 for nine hours and the eastbound lanes for about 3 1/2 hours, wreaking havoc on ski travel. The closures came on the heels of similar closures on Tuesday for rockfall mitigation. The sudden announcement left eager skiers and snowboarders looking for some post-Thanksgiving powder stuck in traffic for hours.
“We appreciate just how disruptive and frustrating these closures were on a long holiday weekend,” Shoshana Lew, executive director of the Colorado Department of Transportation, said in a news release. “Every Colorado resident and visitor can appreciate the draw of the mountains during the winter, and our crews do everything possible to keep roads safe for everyone to travel. We thank everyone for their patience as the CDOT team works to respond to rockfall on I-70 so we can keep the road safe for travelers.”
To prevent further rockslides, the affected region will require mitigation, to include blasting and scaling, over the next few weeks. Mitigation work began this week and will continue Mondays through Thursdays, from 9 am – 3 pm, until completed.
Travelers in both directions of I-70 will see periodic closures as crews scale and drill the rock face. Blasting is scheduled for Wednesday, December 18. For current information, visit cotrip.org.