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Author Topic: The CO-82/Glenwood Gridlock Begins Sunday Night (8/13)  (Read 225 times)

thenetwork

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The CO-82/Glenwood Gridlock Begins Sunday Night (8/13)
« on: August 10, 2017, 12:55:35 PM »

For those planning to visit anywhere along CO-82 from Downtown Glenwood Springs to Aspen via I-70 thru November, have fun!!!

The last phase of the Grand Avenue (CO-82) Bridge Replacement begins this weekend, and it ain't gonna be pretty.  The old bridge will be closed late Sunday night and will be torn down so that the final segment of the new Grand Avenue bridge over I-70, the Colorado River and the Union Pacific Tracks can be completed along the southern footprint of the old bridge.

Why is this such a big issue?  If you are unfamiliar with the area, the CO-82 bridge is only one of two crossings from I-70 into Glenwood Springs proper, and further into the 40+ mile Roaring Fork Valley, which contains the towns of Carbondale, Basalt, and Aspen, among other towns.  With the Grand Avenue Bridge (GAB) out of commission for 3 months, that only leaves a 2-lane Midland Avenue which will connect I-70 to CO-82.   Traffic is predicted to be extremely heavy if not gridlocked for much of this 3-month closure. 

If you plan on coming into the area and want to avoid the mess, you have only a few choices: 

  CO-82/Independence Pass from the Southeast (weather permitting, as there is no guarantee that the back door route to Aspen will be open thru November due to potential early snows).
  Cottonwood Pass, which connects I-70/Gypsum with the Glenwood/Carbondale areas on the northern end of CO-82.
  CO-133/Douglas Pass, which connects Carbondale to points southwest of CO-82 (Delta, Montrose, US-50).

Note the Independence/Cottonwood Passes are NOT recommended for large vehicles, trailers, RVs, etc...

At least the construction leading up to the final phase has been completed on time and considering this area is a year-round destination, planning the closure between the tail end of summer vacations and the beginning of the ski seasons, they are really making this inconvenience as brief as they possibly can.  As far as the CO-82 detour, the city is pretty much landlocked, and there aren't too many roads that they could use around the project.  The major chokepoint will be mostly around the downtown Glenwood area but inbound traffic on CO-82 and on Midland Avenue could see delays to at least an hour at peak times (rush hours & weekends).

More info on the GAB project is here:  https://www.codot.gov/projects/sh82grandavenuebridge
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