Southern Colorado to receive some of nearly $2 billion in additional funding for transportation projects over next ten years
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KRDO) -- An official with the Colorado Department of Transportation confirmed Tuesday that Region 2 in southern Colorado will get around 20% of the $1.7 million in funding announced last week.
Region 2 Director Richard Zamora said that the money is a combination of state funding allocated by the Legislature and federal funding from the infrastructure bill passed by Congress.
"We'll be doing dozens of projects to improve safety along highways," he said.
Zamora said that projects on the horizon in Colorado Springs includes building an overpass at the intersection of Powers Boulevard and Airport Road, which is just west of the main entrance to Peterson Space Force Base; and creating continuous merging lanes in both directions on Interstate 25 between Fillmore Street and Garden of the Gods Road.
"We really need to provide drivers with more room to merge in and out, or continue, because that's a particularly busy stretch," Zamora said. "Construction on the Powers and Airport project could start next year."
The project between Fillmore and Garden of the Gods will include replacing the existing overpass above Ellston Street.
Meanwhile, three planned projects along I-25 in Pueblo will focus on safety improvements at the U.S. 50-B, Drew Dix Parkway/Dillon Drive and Purcell Boulevard interchanges.
"At U.S. 50, we'll replace the aging overpass ramps that have sharp curves," Zamora explained. "It's where we've had numerous semi-truck rollovers. At Purcell, there is a box culvert under the highway that allows only one vehicle to pass through at a time. We'll widen it so that two can pass at the same. At Drew Dix and Dillon, we'll add a roundabout and finish building out what the city started."
Another key project will bring safety upgrades to the I-25 exit at U.S. 160 entering Walsenburg.
On Tuesday, drivers responded to upcoming projects.
"I'm ecstatic and pleased," said Elizabeth Thompson. "Development and growth, we need to take care of our infrastructure here in Colorado, as well as the United States."
" I don't like how long it takes projects to get finished," said Chrissy Dodson. "Being from California, in 6 to 8 months, they have the road closures done and everything back up and running, the way it should be. Here, it seems like years. And I get the weather issues, but come on."
"I'd love to see rail service, but it's not what's happening now," said Maria Elena Weaver. "We need to take care of people and keep them safe in their cars."
Zamora said that no priority list has been established for the projects. To see CDOT's ten-year plan, visit: https://codot.gov/programs/your-transportation-priorities/your-transportation-plan/assets/cdot10yearplan.pdf.