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Residents fighting plans to sink I-70 through the middle of their neighborhoods

Posted: 12:30 PM, Jun 04, 2017
Updated: 2017-06-04 22:58:39Z

The Colorado Department of Transportation has received federal approval for a $1 billion project that would take the now-elevated portion of I-70 near the Elyria-Swansea and Globeville neighborhoods and sink it below ground level.

While that two-mile stretch of road is decades old and in need of repair, many residents who live nearby say CDOT's solution isn’t the right solution for their neighborhood.

“Right now, the bridge underneath I-70 is permeably completely throughout the entire neighborhood,” Candi Cdebaca of Project Voyce told Anne Trujillo on this week’s Politics Unplugged . “It would create a scenario where you would have to drive different amounts to cross over to the other side and that for us is a challenge because we have an elementary school on one side and the middle and high school on the other side. So this is an area where community has to constantly flow back and forth through, so five to seven years of construction is going to make it a challenge and afterwards it’s a solution we are not looking forward to.”

Cdebaca lives just blocks from the interstate in her great-grandparents house. She says they fought the initial plans to put I-70 through the middle of the neighborhood more than 50 years ago.

“Then we didn’t have civil rights to lean on,” Cdebaca said. “So now the community is really leaning on civil rights legislation and different federal protections to stop this from happening and force our leaders to be more visionary about our solutions. “

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Politics Unplugged airs Sundays at 4:30 a.m. and 4 p.m. on Denver7.