Toll lanes best bet to widen I-25 from Castle Rock to Monument, CDOT official says

Tuesday, 05 December 2017, 05:21:49 AM. Express Lanes – similar to U.S. 36 toll lanes from Denver to Boulder – would add lanes to the 17-mile stretch.

A high-ranking official at the Colorado Department of Transportation made his case Monday for adding toll lanes to widen Interstate 25 from Monument to Castle Rock.

Michael Lewis, interim executive director of CDOT, said toll lanes are the best solution for “reliability and mobility” and that the revenue they would generate will be needed to pay for maintenance on the widened stretch of highway.

Under the current proposal, a pair of Express Lanes – similar to the toll lanes on U.S. 36 from Denver to Boulder – would be added to the 17-mile stretch, widening the interstate from two to three lanes in each direction.

Data shows toll lanes have helped relieve congestion on other Colorado highways. Since the Express Lane project was completed on U.S. 36 in 2015, commuters in all lanes have been able to travel at speeds 20 to 29 percent faster during peak hours, according to CDOT.

Lewis said “there’s still some uncertainty” regarding the funding for the $350 million I-25 widening. Officials hope to pay for the $350 million project with a combination of local, state and federal money. But CDOT won’t know until the spring if the project has been chosen for a highly competitive $65 million grant from the U.S. Department of Transportation.

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