Interstate 70 opens to two-way traffic through Glenwood Canyon

Photo taken Tuesday, February 16 shows the damage caused by two rock slides on Interstate 70 in Glenwood Canyon. / Colorado Department of Transportation
Photo taken Tuesday, February 16 shows the damage caused by two rock slides on Interstate 70 in Glenwood Canyon. / Colorado Department of Transportation

GARFIELD COUNTY, Colo. — Interstate 70 is now open to two-way traffic through Glenwood Canyon.

The Colorado Department of Transportation closed a 24-mile stretch of the highway after two large rock slides damaged it February 15. The highway was partially reopened to one-way overnight traffic on Sunday.

The highway reopened at 4 p.m. Thursday. Drivers headed in both directions are traveling through the canyon in the eastbound lanes of the highway. A pace car is leading traffic in each direction to ensure drivers maintain safe speeds. CDOT said drivers should still expect delays of an hour or more to travel through the canyon.

Pace car operations implemented

Eastbound traffic is slow rolled in the one-lane configuration starting at Exit 116 (Glenwood Springs) all the way to Grizzly Creek rest area where a flagger is present and a pace car picks up traffic.

Westbound is slow rolled into one-lane starting at Exit 129 (Bair Ranch) all the way to the east side of the Hanging Lake Tunnel bore (also manned by a flagger) where vehicles will be picked up by the pace car and escorted through.

The pace car operation is manned by Colorado State Patrol and traffic control. At any time, four to six pace cars will be escorting cars through. The pace cars will be used to control the speed and flow of traffic through the restricted area.

A 10-foot width restriction remains in place 24/7.

Mitigation continues

CDOT crews will continue their rockfall mitigation work during the day. Equipment will be staged in the westbound lanes and flown to the mountainside via helicopter. Drivers heading in both directions should expect traffic holds as necessary from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. every day.

Rest areas remain closed

The Grizzly Creek, Hanging Lake and Shoshone rest areas will be closed for the duration of this head-to-head pace car car operation.

Bair Ranch (on the east side) and No Name (west side) rest areas will remain open.

The Glenwood Canyon Bike Path remains closed as well.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s