Highway 6 construction getting heavy | VailDaily.com

Highway 6 construction getting heavy

Matt Zalaznick

Workers at the sprawling Village at Avon are preparing to divert traffic and begin build the roundabout where Nottingham Ranch Road bridge meets Highway 6 just east of the Eagle-Vail Shop N’ Hop.

The work is taking place at the same time a new Eagle River bridge is being built, says Shane Bohart, director of development for Traer Creek LLC, the developer of the village.

“There’s going to be a lot of major activity by the bridge over the next seven to 14 days,” Bohart says.

The work won’t block traffic but will necessitate some minor detours, says Erik Peterson, the Village’s director of construction.

Highway 6 will be restriped so traffic can be diverted to the south slightly while workers begin building the north half of the roundabout, Peterson says.

There will still be two lanes of traffic, Peterson says.

Once the north half of the roundabout is finished, traffic will be diverted to the north slightly so workers can build the south half of the roundabout, Peterson says.

The roundabout should be finished between mid-November and Dec. 1, Peterson says.

“All of it’s contingent on the bridge getting complete,” Peterson says.

Girders for the east side of the new Eagle River bridge are scheduled to be delivered today,

The east half of the bridge should be open to traffic by Oct. 15, at which time the old Nottingham Ranch Road bridge will be demolished, he says.

Workers will then begin work on the west side of the bridge, he says.

When the shops open next summer and fall, customers coming from Highway 6 would go through the roundabout, cross the new Nottingham Ranch Road bridge and then drive under the railroad tracks, where a second, new bridge is being built.

Girders for that bridge will be installed by this weekend, Peterson says.

“That is commencing very well,” he says.

Parking lots are nearly finished for The Home Depot and Wal-Mart, which will open stores in the Village at Avon next summer and fall. Both companies have begun work on the buildings and are progressing rapidly, Peterson says.

The Home Depot and Wal-Mart are planning to have the shells of both buildings finished before winter, so work can continue inside the stores when the snow is falling.

The Home Deport starts raising panels for walls today; Wal-Mart has begun setting blocks around its structure, Peterson says.

“That’s the push—to get everything ready before winter hits,” Peterson says. “Wal-Mart and The Home Depot have really stepped up to the plate and are working at a ferocious pace.”

The other major area of construction is the new I-70 interchange, where drivers in the eastbound lanes are now being diverted onto what will be the exit ramps. The detour will be in place while workers replace the eastbound I-70 bridge.

In two weeks, drivers heading west will be diverted onto the westbound off-ramps while the bridge on that side is replaced.

“Our goal is to have traffic running eastbound on the new I-70 bridge by Oct. 30, with both bridges open by Dec. 1,” Peterson says.

The Colorado Department of Transportation requires the bridges be reopened by Dec. 1.

To ease traffic on Highway 6, a new access ramp has been opened from westbound I-70 to the The Home Depot and Wal-Mart construction sites, Peterson says.

The public should be aware, however, that the ramp is only for Village at Avon construction trucks, he says.

“We’ve got about 70 loads of steel coming for The Home Deport and Wal-Mart,” Peterson says. “Overall, this access ramp will probably save upwards of 120 trucks from using Highway 6.”

Matt Zalaznick can be reached at 949-0555, ext. 606, or via e-mail at mzalaznick@vaildaily.com.

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