Corner of 6&50 to close for 6 days

The ongoing snarl during busy traffic times around the I70-B Reconstruction Project, near the Rimrock Shopping Center, will presumably get more difficult to negotiate next week as crews are planning to shut down one side of a key intersection.

Starting Sunday evening, getting to businesses like Sam’s Club and the Golden Corral restaurant will require lengthy detours, as the north side of the intersection of Independent Avenue and the I-70 Business Loop will be shut to traffic for extended concrete work on the project through the week.

The closure is expected to last until the morning of Saturday, June 15.

To access businesses on the north side of I-70B, also known as U.S. 6&50, eastbound traffic will have to pass through the intersection, get to 1st Street and North Avenue and turn left, and eventually backtrack along Independent Avenue.

Westbound traffic similarly will pass through the intersection, then head north on 25 Road, east on West Pinyon Avenue, and then back south along 25 1/2 Road.

Project planners had originally thought they would keep the intersection at least partly open through the concrete work, but came up with the idea of a temporary closing of one side of the intersection as a way to possibly speed up the timeline. Officials approached businesses about the idea, and affected business owners were generally receptive to the idea, said Tom Newland, public information manager for the project.

“We’ll be able to get through the intersection right away, instead of (the original estimate) of two to three weeks,” Newland said, adding that the change could even reduce the overall project time in the long run.

While the north side of the intersection is the one targeted for closure, traffic on the south side accessing all of the retail businesses in the Rimrock Shopping Center has been consistently backed up because of the project.

During next week’s north-side closure, there will be another left-turn lane added for that traffic to get through the intersection more quickly, if only on a temporary basis.

The weeklong closure is part of a massive reconstruction by the Colorado Department of Transportation of the I-70B area between 25 Road and east of the Rimrock Avenue intersection. The project, which began in April, is expected to be completed by the end of the year.


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