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Prepare for more lane closures this week

Ninth Street, Camino and College will be affected

Commuters going west to the Durango Tech Center will face some lane closures this week as road work continues at the DoubleTree Hotel intersection.

Half-road closures are expected to affect drivers on west Ninth Street this week, said officials with the Colorado Department of Transportation. The westbound Ninth Street lane will be closed during the morning hours while the eastbound lane will close in the evenings. Tech Center commuters may consider taking another street to access Roosa Avenue.

“That’s the biggest change right now,” said Nancy Shanks, spokeswoman for CDOT Region 5. “That’s going to affect a new group of travelers.”

Other impacts to traffic starting Monday include one-lane closures on northbound and southbound Camino del Rio expected between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., and lane closures on College Drive. Pedestrians traveling on the east side of Camino del Rio from College Drive to Eighth Street could see slight detours and temporary ramps.

The $6 million project, expected to take about five months, is focused on relieving congestion and improving safety at the DoubleTree intersection and redesigning the intersection of west College Drive and Camino del Rio. Construction started March 17.

CDOT is installing a continuous-flow intersection, which moves a left-hand turn lane away from the major intersection. Currently, northbound drivers on South Camino del Rio turning left onto U.S. Highway 160 must cross the path of oncoming traffic from the opposite direction. But by moving the left turn south from the intersection, it will reduce delays and accommodate more traffic, according to a 2010 report by the U.S. Department of Transportation.

“This intersection sees 30,000 to 45,000 vehicles each day, depending upon the season,” said Michael McVaugh, Region 5 traffic and safety engineer for CDOT in a news release. “That’s more motorized traffic than any state highway on the Western Slope, (including U.S. Interstate 70) and about the same amount of traffic as the busiest state highways in Greeley.”

The left-turning traffic travels on a separated road, which is on the outside of the other lanes, toward the major intersection. At the intersection, they can go harmoniously with the opposing traffic. The city of Loveland, north of Denver, has the only such intersection in the state.

Part of the project includes three raised crosswalks, also known as speed tables, and triangular islands at College Avenue and Camino del Rio to help safety and visibility. The concept was adapted from the city of Boulder designs.

“At a conventional signalized intersection, right-turning motorists are often presented with yielding to pedestrians and merging with traffic at the same time,” said CDOT Designer and Project Engineer Tommy Humphrey in a news release. “The pedestrian-friendly layout of these raised crosswalks causes right-hand-turning motorists to focus first on the pedestrian and, once past the crossing, focus on merging into traffic.”


An earlier version of this story gave an incorrect website address for CDOT alerts.

Stay informed

Sign up for email and text alerts from CDOT by:

Visit www.coloradodot.info and click the green cellphone icon. Choose “US 160/550 Durango” under the projects list.

Call the hotline at (970) 238-1669.

Email info@heyredmarketing.com.

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