Rock scaling operations along a stretch of Interstate 70 in Glenwood Canyon, Colo., are bringing down “significantly more debris” than anticipated, according to the Colorado Department of Transportation.
CDOT officials had hoped to reopen a portion of I-70 for a single-lane pilot car program at some point on Thursday, after the entire interstate was shut down by two separate rockslides. Crews continue working to stabilize the slope and install rockfall mitigation devices on top of the westbound barrier walls.
In a press release issued Wednesday, the agency said it could be several weeks before the damage to the roadway and walls is sufficiently repaired to fully reopen the interstate to regular traffic.
I-70 drivers headed to areas in the southern part of the state are advised to use U.S. 50 as an alternate route. Access to Highway 50 is available via Grand Junction for eastbound drivers and for westbound drivers by way of U.S. 285 through the Salida area from the Front Range.
Per the agency, the alternate route for westbound motorists is north on CO 131 at Wolcott to Steamboat Springs, west on U.S. 40 to Craig, then south on CO 13 to Rifle and back to I-70. Cottonwood Pass is closed and is not a viable alternate route.
The detour is roughly 203 miles and is expected to add nearly four hours to westbound motorists’ commutes.
Additional traffic and road condition information can be found at CoTrip.org.
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