WESTMINSTER, Colo. — More than a week after a crack on US 36 turned into a full-on sinkhole, a portion of the busy highway remains closed.
The eastbound lanes of US 36 between Wadsworth Boulevard and 104th Avenue/Church Ranch Boulevard have been closed since July 12, and it'll likely be some time before they're able to be repaired and then reopened.
In the meantime, the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) reconfigured traffic to allow two lanes of eastbound traffic on the westbound side in that area. That means there are just two lanes of travel in each direction on about a half-mile stretch of the highway.
Below is 9NEWS coverage of the collapse, plans to repair the road and how to avoid driving through the area.
CDOT said it is not sure how much it has spent so far of the estimated $20 million cost to complete the US 36 rebuild project.
The highway will fully reopen by 5 a.m. Friday for the morning commute.
CDOT expects lanes on US 36 to reopen by early October.
Crews need to install 6,000 blocks total to continue repair work after US 36 collapsed in July.
Three lanes of traffic in each direction on US 36 are expected to reopen by October.
The emergency cost to fix US 36 just west of Church Ranch Boulevard will be around $20 million, CDOT is estimating.
US 36 is a hot mess when all the lanes are open … and since it’s likely the eastbound direction will remain closed for awhile, it might be prudent to prepare yourself ahead of time for a particularly difficult commute.
CDOT has an agreement with a private company, Plenary Roads Denver, to manage US 36. But Plenary isn't the road's inspector.
Kraemer North America will work to rebuild the damaged portion of eastbound US 36 between Wadsworth Boulevard and 104th Avenue/Church Ranch Boulevard.
The bike path surrounding the area where US 36 is sinking is closed indefinitely amid safety concerns and construction, CDOT said. A detour is in place.
Most of the ground under the Boulder Turnpike is part of the Arapahoe Formation from the late Cretaceous period. That type of landscape does lend itself to small landslides, although not many have been documented in that immediate area.
Along with the cost of repairing the damaged stretch of roadway, CDOT may also have to pay to reimburse Plenary for the lost revenue while toll lanes are closed.
This is the internet, and you love to be outraged, so here's one thing to clarify: We know this is a serious story. The nicknames are all in fun. We'll continue working to get to the bottom of what went wrong, and what it will cost taxpayers.
Workers shifted two eastbound lanes on the westbound side with a concrete barrier separating the east- and westbound lanes. The work resulted in reduced travel to two lanes in each direction for a roughly half-mile stretch between Wadsworth and Church Ranch Boulevard.
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