LONE TREE, Colo. - The Colorado Department of Transportation has launched a pilot program on southbound I-25 starting near Dry Creek that created a dedicated direct lane for through traffic to use.
"Depending on the success of this pilot program, we will anticipate using this along other areas of I-25, possibly along areas of I-70," said CDOT spokeswoman Crystal Morgan.
Lone Tree Police Department has begun an education program to remind drivers not to cross the double white lines that restrict motorists from weaving in and out of the direct lane. White and black signs and variable message boards will continue to remind motorists may not cross the double white lines to enter or exit the direct lane.
"Hopefully when people get their driver's license they know that a solid double white line means: you have to stay in the lane of traffic," said Lone Tree Police Sgt. Ryan Gallegos. "By keeping the cars in that lane of travel it's going to prevent them from exiting off those ramps and cutting across several lanes of traffic."
There is electronic signage to remind drivers in the left lane not to cross the double white line.
"We will stop them and we will educate them, but we will not issue tickets at this time," Gallegos said. "We will not do special ops. If we're driving down the road to and from another call and we see a violation, we'll stop and educate the public."
"Police won't write a ticket, so what's the point?" asked 7NEWS reporter Marshall Zelinger.
"One of the things about this pilot program is we're seeing a lot of folks self-policing," said Morgan.
During the Wednesday evening rush hour, 7NEWS saw the majority of drivers remaining in the left lane, but in a stretch of 15 seconds, five cars crossed the double white line to get into the second lane which was moving faster.
"The one concern is people do continue to hop over that lane and disregard the double white line," said Morgan.
The assessment period for the direct lane will continue for several weeks. CDOT will be monitoring traffic flow, traffic patterns and whether or not this program saves time and increases traffic flow for motorists traveling through this area.
CDOT encourages those using this corridor to visit: http://www.coloradodot.info/projects/i25sbpilotprogram to learn more about this pilot program and provide feedback on the direct lanes concept and how the lanes are working.