Two-Hour Construction Delays Possible At Eisenhower Tunnel

$3.8 Million Project Begins Next Week

The Colorado Department of Transportation will begin repaving the Eisenhower Tunnel next week, requiring traffic on Interstate 70 to be reduced from four to two lanes, officials announced Friday.

The work will include removal of the existing asphalt and concrete and asphalt paving the 1.7-mile length of both tunnels.

To accomplish the project in the most safe and efficient manner, CDOT will close one tunnel bore at a time, reducing eastbound and westbound traffic to a single lane through the opposite bore.

"Although it is uncertain what the traffic impacts will be, since I-70 traffic will be reduced to a single lane, drivers should anticipate traffic delays that could exceed two hours, especially during the peak travel hours, between 2 p.m. and 5 p.m," CDOT said in the written statement.

Motorists were advised to consider alternate routes if delay times are excessive. In addition to Loveland Pass, U.S. 40/State Highway 9 via Berthoud Pass, Kremmling and Silverthorne, and U.S. 285/State Highway 9 via Fairplay, Hoosier Pass and Frisco are possible alternate routes.

CDOT said it will monitor traffic and providing updates on how traffic is being affected and provide delay times to the traveling public.

Each bore will remain closed 24 hours a day, during the following times:

  • North Bore – Westbound I-70: Sunday, Sept. 10, 10 p.m. to Friday, Sept. 15, 10 a.m.
  • North Bore – Westbound I-70: Sunday, Sept. 17, 10 p.m. to Friday, Sept. 22, 10 a.m.
  • South Bore – Eastbound I-70: Sunday, Sept. 24, 9 p.m. to Friday, Sept. 29, 9 a.m.

    Vehicles wider than 8 feet, 6 inches will be required to use U.S. 6 over Loveland Pass when traffic is restricted through the tunnel. Both tunnels will be open to traffic each weekend.

    "We realize that delays are inevitable while the project is taking place since there isn’t ever a good time to closed lanes on I-70," said CDOT Resident Engineer Ina Zisman. "We need to complete this work before winter, and in order to minimize impacts to the traveling public, we’ve scheduled work when traffic volumes are at their lowest. The last full paving of the roadway through there was in 1997 but due to the harsh conditions at that altitude (11,155 feet), the highway requires a new surface."

    CDOT encourages drivers to check the cotrip.org Web site for the latest information on delay times before traveling the I-70 west corridor. Information also will be available by calling 303-639-1111 in the Denver area or 877-315-ROAD elsewhere in Colorado. Numerous electronic message boards on I-70 west also will be in use during the project, informing the public of estimated delay times at the tunnel.

    American Civil Constructors, Inc., of Lakewood, Colo., is the contractor for the $3.8 million Eisenhower Tunnel project.