Expect another summer of traffic delays | VailDaily.com

Expect another summer of traffic delays

EAGLE COUNTY – The summer construction season is upon us again, and, as for the last couple of years, there are just a few big projects.

Those projects will, however, affect a lot of residents.

Xcel Energy has the biggest project, construction of a new, high-capacity natural gas line between Edwards and Minturn. That new line will be laid under U.S. Highway 6, and will close down parts of the highway to one lane for about the next six months. Work started this week in Edwards, and there will be traffic delays wherever the work is going on.

Plans call for crews to cover about 500 feet of line per day, and the westbound lane will be repaved about 2,500 feet at a time. The good news is that traffic will be slowed, not stopped. Two lanes of traffic will flow through the construction zone, but flaggers will slow down vehicles to 25 mph.

While the utility company has set an aggressive schedule, the project will shut down over Memorial Day, the Fourth of July and Labor Day.

As the gas line work moves east, the big roundabout project near the Edwards Interstate 70 exit will get its finishing touches this year. Crews will still be working through much of the summer, although the roundabouts will remain completely open. American Civil Constructors is expected to be completely finished by June 6, but landscaping starts a week later.

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While the lanes will remain open, there could be some slowdowns due to trucks delivering plants and other material.

Eagle-Vail residents will see two projects this summer. Besides the gas-line project, the Eagle-Vail Metropolitan District and Holy Cross Energy will complete a project to bury power lines through the subdivision this summer.

Community Manager Jeff Layman said the project is expected to take about six weeks to finish. Most of the work will be in the shoulders U.S. Highway 6, but there will be one small part of the project that will cross the highway. Layman said that the power line and gas line projects probably won’t be in the same areas at the same time.

Business Editor Scott N. Miller can be reached at 970-748-2930 or smiller@vaildaily.com.