PIKES PEAK REGION, Colo. (KRDO) -- It's a question worth asking, after what drivers have experienced on the busy stretch of highway in recent years.
Last Fourth of July weekend, traffic there was unusually heavy; backups between Colorado Springs and the entrance to the Pikes Peak Highway were seven miles long.
During the same period in 2017, traffic jams were so long that a round trip to the summit of Pikes Peak took drivers all day.
With the COVID-19 pandemic winding down somewhat, along with the resumption of the Cog Railway and the opening of the new Summit Complex, will they produce another wave of record traffic congestion? And what are officials doing to prepare for the possibility?
Michelle Peulen, Communications Manager, with the Colorado Deptartment of Transportation says that traffic along Highway 24 is likely with the additional of Pikes Peak's new visitor center. She adds, "The new visitor center up there, definitely plan to see increased traffic."
Highway I-25 along Larkspur is also likely to traffic jams. The Colorado Renaissance Festival in Larkspur kicks off this weekend, which is another source of added congestion.
C-DOT says they've suspended all construction and maintenance projects from Friday through Tuesday, but they ask that you obey speed limits.
Peulen clarifies, "We do have construction zones in the areas. We won’t have work going on, but if you look at I-25, it's a very active area with no work going on, but folks will need to pay attention to speed limits."
The communications manager added a few tips for handling heavy traffic: "What we hope that folks will do is plan ahead, know that their trip times are going to take a little bit longer, and pack their patience."