It only took Russ Hansen three months of commuting to Denver from Fort Collins before he realized the trek was too miserable to do alone five days per week.

Instead, he started van-pooling three to four days a week, which cuts down his commute time thanks to the HOV lane.

Congestion on Interstate 25 in Northern Colorado has increased dramatically in recent years. In the past decade, the number of cars driving on the interstate at U.S. Highway 34 in Loveland has jumped from an average of 66,325 per day in 2006 to 80,077 last year, a nearly 21 percent increase.

The Fort Collins Area Chamber of Commerce has lobbied for expediting the expansion of I-25 in Northern Colorado and has argued that traffic congestion on the interstate has made it less likely that businesses will want to relocate or expand in the region.

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