The Colorado Department of Transportation reopened two lanes of traffic on the highway between Boulder and Denver in time for Tuesday’s rush hour by diverting two lanes of eastbound U.S. 36 onto the westbound lanes.
The traffic shift was made 24 hours ahead of schedule, said a 5:41 a.m. CDOT tweet.
The temporary eastbound lanes are running on what had been the westbound lanes, and westbound traffic is being funneled down to two lanes as well, to accommodate the temporary lanes for about a half-mile stretch just west of the Church Ranch Boulevard and the West 104th Avenue interchange.
Anthony Meneghetti, lead engineer with CDOT on the U.S. 36 emergency repair operation, said Monday that the westbound lanes of the highway have not been compromised by the current collapse. A bridge that carries highway traffic on U.S. 36 over BNSF Railway track has been “disconnected” from the failing road and the bridge is also structurally sound and safe.
“There will be no risk at all to the traveling public,” CDOT spokesperson Tamara Rollison said of the temporary traffic lanes.
Construction employees are already working on the detour where the road is falling apart between the Church Ranch and Wadsworth Boulevard exits. It’s a big project in a short amount of time, she said.
CDOT completes traffic shift, opening eastbound lanes on US 36, 24 hours ahead of schedule, while emergency work continues on collapsed roadway on eastbound US 36 near Wadsworth Blvd. For more info go to release:https://t.co/dZ7o29VeCN
— CDOT (@ColoradoDOT) July 16, 2019
State highway maintenance workers discovered a crack in the highway Thursday night. By noon Friday, a large section of the highway had buckled. On Sunday night, the chasm was widening.