Vail Pass I-70 project gets a $60 million funding boost
Both Colorado's senators and 2nd District Rep. Joe Neguse worked to free up federal funds for the project
The Colorado Department of Transportation will receive a $60.7 million Infrastructure for Rebuilding America grant from the U.S. Department of Transportation to make improvements to Interstate 70 between mile post 180 and 190 in Eagle County.
Sens. Cory Gardner and Michael Bennet, as well as Rep. Joe Neguse, pushed the Department of Transportation to make this project a priority earlier this year.
“Interstate 70 is an important economic driver in our state, but I’ve heard from countless Coloradans who are frustrated with congestion, unsafe driving conditions, and frequent closures due to weather events,” Gardner said in a news release. “That’s why I advocated for this funding to improve I-70 and am proud to have helped secure this grant of more than $60 million.”
Neguse, a Democrat whose 2nd Congressional District includes the I-70 corridor through the mountains, released a statement saying: “Investments in safety and reliability in the I-70 corridor is essential to keep Coloradans safe and to continue to connect travelers east and west of the Continental Divide. I am grateful to see funding awarded to these projects.”
“I’m thankful to the efforts of Rep. Neguse and our federal partners to ensure that critical infrastructure dollars can flow to our mountain communities,” Gov. Jared Polis. “Safer roads will protect drivers, people traveling through I-70 and help boost Colorado’s important tourism and outdoor recreation economies and jobs.”
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The $60 million awarded to the Colorado Department Transportation makes up a substantial portion of the $140 million total cost for the Vail Pass project.
The funding will be used to build an eastbound auxiliary lane, reconstructing the eastbound bridge over Polk Creek, shoulder widening, westbound curve modifications, reconstruction of a truck ramp, dynamic message signs, a variable speed limit system, and automated anti-icing technologies.
The project is expected to take several years, as funding is available.