VAIL, Colorado - The southbound lane of the Matterhorn Bridge over Gore Creek opened Wednesday following delays earlier this week which included an inoperable crane. Northbound traffic from the neighborhood to the South Frontage Road will be detoured until the crane is removed and two-way traffic operations can safely occur. The project had originally been scheduled to be completed by Dec. 15; however, extended utility work and unanticipated soil conditions caused the project to fall behind schedule.
The bridge is located on the south side of Interstate 70 in the Matterhorn neighborhood and construction has been under way since late July. The contractor is Colorado Constructors Inc. of Denver.
Following Wednesday's southbound opening, temporary bus stops at Conoco, Donovan Park and along the South Frontage Road will be discontinued and the regular bus stops at Matterhorn and Ptarmigan will be activated effective at 6 a.m. today.
While the bridge project is substantially complete, work on the permanent bridge rails will continue behind temporary barriers, as weather allows. The contractor will return in the spring to complete remaining temperature sensitive items, such as asphalt paving, landscaping and structural coating. The bridge will remain open for these spring activities with temporary single lane closures as necessary.-
Project engineer Chad Salli says the town is appreciative of the neighborhood's patience during construction.
"We recognize the tremendous inconvenience this project has caused the neighborhood and the rerouting that has been involved," he said.
Originally built in 1970, the old Matterhorn Circle Bridge was structurally deficient and has been replaced with a longer bridge to better handle the flows of Gore Creek during high water seasons. The $970,000 project has been funded by a federal grant which covers 80 percent of the design and construction costs. This is the first significant bridge replacement project in Vail since construction of the Pulis Bridge on Vail Valley Drive in 1995.
For more information about the project, contact Salli at 970-479-2169.