Hwy 24 EA plans to go public in mid-2010

       It's been quiet lately, but that doesn't mean plans for a future Highway 24 widening have gone away.

Crowds of well over 100 people turned out for the earlier meetings on the proposed Westside Highway 24 expansion plan, such as this one in February 2006. However, meeting numbers dwindled after it became known that no work is expected to occur until 2016 at the earliest.
Westside Pioneer file photo

       Dave Watt, project leader for the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT), said in a recent interview that staff and consultants have been working on the required environmental assessment (EA) document, with plans to complete a draft EA for public review by mid-2010.
       Assuming no major new issues arise at that point, Watt said that CDOT is “targeting the end of 2010” for submission of the final decision document. Eventual approval of that product by the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) “will be like a building permit” for the project, he said.
       There is as yet no timetable or funding for the project, which (according to plans shown at meetings) would widen Highway 24 to three lanes each way - even four lanes in the area of I-25 and Eighth Street - from the interstate up to Ridge Road. Other plans to date have called for interchanges at 8th and 21st streets and widenings at the 26th and 31st street intersections and a no-access overpass (though with capacity for ramps, if desired) at Ridge Road.
       The EA draft will include explanations of what CDOT must do to mitigate potential impacts from the project, including aspects such as stormwater runoff, air quality, noise, neighborhoods and land use.
       The current schedule shows no work occurring any sooner than 2016, with the first improvements occurring near I-25. Project areas to the west would be addressed in the ensuing years, up to the year 2035, according to regional transportation estimates.

Westside Pioneer article