Preliminary Grand Avenue Bridge construction schedule released | PostIndependent.com

Preliminary Grand Avenue Bridge construction schedule released

A rendering of the planned Highway 82/Grand Avenue Bridge shows the new alignment from downtown Glenwood Springs, right, curving toward the intersection of Sixth and Laurel and the Interstate 70 Exit 116.
Colorado Department of Transportation |

Colorado Department of Transportation officials have released a preliminary phasing plan for construction of the new Grand Avenue Bridge in Glenwood Springs that is expected to start in January and continue for the next two-plus years.

Final approval was given by the Colorado Transportation Commission, sitting as the state Bridge Enterprise Board, on Nov. 19 for the $125.6 million project to proceed following a four-year-long planning, environmental review and design process.

That approval included authorization of another $5.3 million to go toward the $68.4 million construction portion of the budget to build the newly aligned bridge across the Colorado River, connecting Highway 82 to Interstate 70.

Phase 1 of the project is to begin in January/February 2016, and will include construction of a temporary pedestrian walkway on the existing vehicle bridge, followed by demolition of the existing pedestrian bridge to make way for the new ped bridge that is part of the project.

Also during that time, a “causeway,” or construction platform, will be built on the south bank of the Colorado River to prepare for the initial stages of highway bridge construction. That work must be completed before the spring fish spawning season, bridge project team officials explained.

According to the preliminary construction schedule, Phase 2 will take place from March 2016 until January 2017. During that time, the new pedestrian bridge and elevator tower that will provide handicapped access to Seventh Street will be built.

The new pedestrian bridge is expected to be open by February 2017 when Phase 3 commences, including construction of the north end of the bridge nearest the intersection of Sixth and Laurel where the new bridge will land.

The existing Grand Avenue Bridge and Sixth Street will continue to carry Highway 82 and local traffic until August 2017 when the bridge will be shut down and demolished to make way for the final section of the new bridge.

From August to December 2017 is when the planned Highway 82 detour will be in place during Phase 4 of the project when the final bridge section is built.

Detour preparations and construction will take place during Phase 3, resulting in some traffic and pedestrian impacts along Midland Avenue and Seventh Street.

The detour will take motorists from I-70 Exit 114, along Midland Avenue and across the Eighth Street bridge to what will be a newly constructed street connection into downtown Glenwood and back onto Grand Avenue.

By January 2018, the new bridge should be open to traffic, although some finishing work is expected to continue until May of that year as part of the Phase 5 work, according to the preliminary schedule.

According to Tom Newland, project public information manager, CDOT and its construction manager/general contractor for the project, the joint venture of Granite/RL Wadsworth, will be meeting soon to schedule an open house that will be used to further explain the project schedule to the public. That will likely occur in early January, he said.

“We also plan to hit the pavement and go door to door to businesses with information about the project and what kinds of impacts they can expect,” Newland said.

CDOT is also working to form a new “Public Information Leadership Team,” involving local business representatives, government officials and citizen groups, which will remain active during the bridge project, he said.

“We want to have people from all of the stakeholders involved in this, including local businesses, river users, civic and community groups,” he said. “This way we have a two-way conduit for us to share information and can also have feedback from the stakeholders back to us.”

Newland reiterated at the time final approval was given by the Transportation Commission that CDOT had contact with over 3,000 individuals during the planning phase of the project.

“CDOT and Glenwood Springs wanted a bridge that was sensitive to the context of the community,” he said. “To realize this we provided continuous and meaningful involvement of the public and all stakeholders throughout the project development process.”

That effort will continue during the construction phases, he said.

Through the initial 2016 phase of the project, motorists should be prepared to experience short traffic stops and lane closures. However, the speed limit through the project area is expected to remain at 25 mph, according to project officials.

Those with questions or concerns about the project, or who want to receive updates on the project as it is constructed, may contact Newland at (970) 618-9922, or via email at tom@newlandprojectresources.com.

To receive project updates via e-mail, visit http://www.sh82grandavenuebridge.com and click on the green cell-phone icon in the upper right corner to subscribe to receive free project text alerts.

Grand Avenue Bridge Preliminary Construction schedule

PHASE 1, January-February 2016, construction will include:

• Remove restrooms and existing walls under bridge

• Install temporary wall for caisson/substructure work on eastbound I-70

• Install temporary wall and excavate for caissons between railroad tracks and Seventh Street.

• Install caissons between railroad tracks and Seventh Street, including load test of east caisson

• Install temporary walkway on vehicle bridge

• Install southern causeway down to pier locations near river (must be done by March 1)

• Start temp shoring wall/excavation on north abutment pedestrian bridge

• Start temp shoring wall/excavation on north abutment vehicle bridge

• Install ped walkway to shoring wall from vehicle bridge to Sixth Street

• Construct cul-de-sac near east end of Glenwood Hot Springs parking lot in anticipation of closing parking lot

• Switch pedestrian traffic over river and I-70 to temporary walkway, concluding Phase 1 construction.

Expected traffic and pedestrian impacts during Phase 1:

• Pedestrian access will remain in its current configuration in the downtown and Hot Springs area, with the exception of the sidewalk along the south side of Seventh Street under the bridge.

• The Hot Springs Pool parking lot will be closed from early February 2016 until late January 2018. (Temporary Hot Springs parking at former Big Horn Toyota lot on Sixth Street and next to Sioux Villa Curio)

• River Street (frontage road between the Hot Springs Pool and I-70) will remain open with some occasional closures for placement of the temporary walkway, until the closure of the Hot Springs Pool parking lot. At that time River Street will be closed. Sixth Street, Laurel Street and Highway 82 on the west side of the Hot Springs Pool will remain open in its existing configuration.

• Eastbound I-70 will experience one-lane closures starting in mid-January to install the temporary wall and platform from which the pedestrian bridge and traffic bridge will be constructed. All lanes will remain open on westbound I-70, but there will be a few night closures of the westbound lanes for the installation of the temporary pedestrian walkway.

• Seventh Street will have single lane closures required for construction of substructure at pier 6. Intermittent full closures may be needed for material delivery, concrete pours, ingress/egress and to safely perform the work.

PHASE 2, March 2016 to January 2017, construction will include:

• Complete shoring excavation for various retaining walls and the north ped bridge abutment

• Ped Bridge: Demolish existing bridge, install caissons and girders, construct new pedestrian bridge, install fencing on bridge, install elevators and building on south end, open pedestrian bridge

• Vehicle Bridge: Install caissons, construct sub-structure north of the river

• Drainage: Install all drainage without utility or roadway conflicts north of river, install new drainage in downtown section

• Excavate and install pedestrian tunnel north of I-70

• Excavate, shore and construct various retaining walls

• Backfill and start road construction in areas that are ready

• River Road, new alignment Grand Avenue, I-70 westbound off-ramp paving, new roadway south of I-70 westbound off-ramp (east half of roadway)

• Install all utilities into their final alignment, including under the pedestrian bridge.

Expected traffic and pedestrian impacts during Phase 2:

• Pedestrian access: Highway 82 to Sixth mostly in current alignment, but will need to shift some due to construction requirements; crossing over river, I-70 via temporary pedestrian bridge next to Grand Avenue; Seventh Street, northside sidewalk closed, south side open.

• Hot Springs Pool parking lot will be closed as work on ped bridge and vehicle bridge is conducted.

• River Street will be closed. A cul-de-sac will be placed near the east end of parking lot for turn-around of vehicles accessing Hot Springs Pool.

• The Sixth and Laurel intersection will be open in existing configuration, with nightly/weekend lane closures for installation of utilities.

• I-70 will experience occasional full closures at night for pedestrian bridge demolition, girder erection and possible bridge deck pours. Eastbound traffic will go down to single lane for installation caissons and pedestrian bridge work. Westbound traffic will be open in the existing configuration with some lane closures for utility/drainage installation.

PHASE 3, February-August 2017, construction will include:

• Pedestrian Bridge: Install any finishes that aren’t complete when open

• Vehicle Bridge, north of river: Construct any unfinished sub-structure; install girders, pour deck, install parapet and finishes, install masonry

• Pre-build forms required for work during bridge closure

• Install remaining drainage that doesn’t have roadway conflicts

• Install masonry and finishes on walls that have been constructed; excavate and construct remaining walls; add finishes to remaining walls

• Complete backfill and roadway construction on River Road, new alignment of Grand Avenue (other than what can’t be done until bridge shutdown), and I-70 westbound off-ramp

• Construction of Eighth Street detour, June-August 2017): Remove UP railroad spur tracks; excavate and build detour connection of Eighth Street; patch existing bridge; upgrade guardrail on existing bridge; construct intersection improvements; mill and fill Midland Avenue; widen Exit 114 I-70 ramps; West Glenwood roundabout improvements for detour; mill/fill downtown roads for detour

Expected traffic and pedestrian impacts during Phase 3:

• River Street will be closed, but will have cul-de-sac near east end of parking lot for turn-around of vehicles at the Hot Springs Pool

• Hot Springs Pool parking lot will be closed, crews will be working on new traffic bridge.

• Sixth Street, Laurel Street, and Highway 82 will be open in existing configuration, with nightly/weekend lane closures as necessary for construction

• I-70 will have full closures at night for traffic bridge girder erection and deck pour. Eastbound traffic mostly open, down to single lane for installation of northern causeway Aug. 1; westbound traffic mostly open, down to single lane for construction of I-70 westbound off-ramp at Exit 116

• Seventh Street will have single lane closures required for construction of substructure at pier 6. Intermittent full closures may be needed for material delivery, concrete pours, ingress/egress and to safely perform the work.

• Midland Avenue will be open in existing configuration, though Eighth Street detour will be ongoing (see detour phase for this work).

• Exit 114 westbound and eastbound will be open in existing configuration

• During detour construction: Pedestrian access should mostly remain the same but there will be some sidewalk closures; Midland Avenue will be mostly open but will need lane closures at night to do the round-a-bouts and the mill/fill; Eighth Street will be open but might need some closures of access roads during detour; will need to close lanes during the construction at intersection; I-70 ramps will need shoulder closures/width reduction to construct the wider lanes.

PHASE 4, August-December 2017, construction will include:

• Construct north causeway down to river for piers and have ready for construction starting Aug. 15

• Vehicle bridge demo will start at pier near Seventh Street and work north and south; construct remaining portion of bridge to open as quickly as possible; will open once it is safe to have traveling public on bridge

• Install any remaining drainage during shutdown

• Excavate, shore and construct sections of walls not constructed in phase 2

• Reconstruct Grand Avenue north and south of bridge; open to traffic as soon as it is ready

• Hot Springs Pool parking lot: Regrade, place base, install curb and gutter, pave, prepare to open to public when completed

Expected traffic and pedestrian impacts during Phase 4:

• Pedestrian access: Highway 82 to Sixth Street, through ped tunnel with some switches for the road construction; across I-70, Colorado River and railroad track, on new ped bridge; Seventh Street, sidewalk will be closed underneath bridge on both sides of road

• Hot Springs Pool parking lot closed for staging materials as well as completion of north abutment removal and parking lot re-construction.

• River Street will be closed, will have cul-de-sac near east end of parking lot for turn-around of vehicles to the Hot Springs Pool

• Sixth and Laurel streets will be open in reduced lanes for construction of the new interchange; one lane in each direction for duration of shutdown. There will be significantly less traffic in this area during the bridge shutdown/detour phase of the project.

• I-70 eastbound, will need to take down to one lane for installation of some items and work but should be mostly open; nightly closures for bridge demolition; westbound, open in existing configuration with nightly closures for bridge demolition

• Seventh Street will be closed both east and west of Grand Avenue for duration

• Eighth Street detour open during this phase

PHASE 5, January-May 2018, construction will include:

• River work: Includes removal of both causeways, installation of permanent rip-rap and slope revegetation

• New vehicle bridge now open to traffic: Install masonry, fence, lighting and other finishes, will need nightly closures for some work; depending on timing might also need to complete barrier

• Excavate, shore and construct remaining walls

• Road construction: Finish remaining roadwork on new alignment, do not anticipate much more than median work; build I-70 eastbound on-ramp after wall is completed; reconstruct Seventh Street

• Finish Hot Springs Pool parking lot including paving

• Complete ITS and roadway electrical work

• Remove Eighth Street detour and re-grade to previous grades

Expected traffic and pedestrian impacts during Phase 5:

• Pedestrian access: Highway 82 to Sixth Street, final location with switches as needed for construction; new ped bridge and path open; Seventh Street, sidewalk will be closed due to overhead safety critical work underneath bridge on both sides of street until we have completed striping, patching and finishing of bridge.

• Hot Springs Pool parking lot, open when completed River Street is open, but might need occasional closures to complete work

• Sixth and Laurel streets, Highway 82 will be open with potential of night closures

• I-70 eastbound down to one lane for removal of northern causeway, installation of retaining wall and widening of eastbound on-ramp; westbound will be open in existing configuration

• Seventh Street will be closed east and west of Grand Avenue until work under bridge is complete and road is reconstructed.

Source: Colorado Department of Transportation project team


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