I-70 repairs almost done in Glenwood Canyon | VailDaily.com

I-70 repairs almost done in Glenwood Canyon

John Gardner
Post Independent Staff
Vail, CO Colorado
AP/Colorado Department of TransportationA huge rock lies on a badly damaged stretch of Interstate 70 in Glenwood Canyon on March 8. The freeway was closed for about four days after the rock slide

GLENWOOD SPRINGS, Colorado – Repair work on Interstate 70 in Glenwood Canyon, where about 20 boulders punched holes in the road surface on March 8, is on schedule to be completed later this month.

According to Colorado Department of Transportation spokeswoman Nancy Shanks, crews have nearly completed repairs to the road surface and are just waiting for some additional materials to complete the wire mesh rock mitigation fencing portion of the project just west of the Hanging Lake Tunnel.

“They are almost done, weather permitting,” Shanks said. “It may be another week or two before the canyon will be back to normal.”

Work remaining on the road repairs – as of Monday – includes replacing the median concrete barrier that was destroyed by the falling rocks. All that remains after that is striping the traffic lanes and things should be back to normal, Shanks said.

The repair work on I-70 began on March 22 and is scheduled for completion by May 22. The work involved bridge deck and bridge wall repairs, including 150 feet of new steel bridge rail, 120 feet of guardrail repairs, 400 feet of median concrete barrier replacement and removal and replacement of nearly 700 square feet of concrete retaining wall.

Specialized work to straighten a steel bridge girder that was damaged in the March fall was also included, along with some lighting and electrical repairs, and some minor repairs to sections of the Glenwood Canyon bike path below the traffic lanes.

However, crews are waiting for a shipment of approximately 6,800 square feet of wire mesh to complete the rock fall mitigation fencing. Portions of which have already been installed along the rock fall area.

Overall, contractor Flatiron Construction Corp. will have installed 14,000 square feet of wire mesh, or rock fall netting, along the canyon wall near the site of the rock fall.

They are expecting to get the final shipment of wire mesh Tuesday, and they will be able to complete the project on time.

That portion of the project was added and extended the project by about one week, after a 2 foot by 3 foot boulder crashed into a vehicle driving through the work zone on March 25. No one was injured in that accident, or the original March 8 rock fall that closed the canyon for three days.

Sections of I-70 were damaged when more than 20 boulders, one as large as a tractor-trailer and weighing an estimated 66 tons, punched holes through the road surface. One of the holes was as large as 10 feet by 6 feet.

Approximately 500 tons of road base material and 400 tons of asphalt were used to repair the road surface. Repair costs were reported at $860,000 with an additional $300,000 for the wire mesh installation.

I-70 remains restricted to one traffic lane in each direction through the work zone.


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