Preliminary work starts on Cimarron interchange; no major I-25 impacts seen till 2016Over the next few weeks, pre-construction activity will be evident in the area of the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT)'s upcoming Cimarron/ I-25 interchange project.
“While this work does not mean the beginning of the interchange reconstruction itself, this pre-construction activity will be noticeable,” said Dave Watt, CDOT's resident engineer and project director.
Crews have already begun survey and utility relocation work on the west side of I-25. Other work getting under way is soil testing along the shoulders of the new southbound I-25 off-ramp to Cimarron. Initially, this work will not impact traffic, but within the next few weeks, it will require short-term shoulder or lane closures on I-25 and Cimarron, a press release states.
Major impacts on I-25 traffic are not anticipated until early 2016. The announced completion date is December 2017.
Crews also will soon begin removing vegetation and invasive tree species (clearing and grubbing) just west of the interchange in coordination with Colorado Parks and Wildlife. “Clearing and grubbing is a necessary early step to set the stage for the Fountain Creek restoration, Midland Trail improvements and to facilitate earthwork along the west side of I-25," Watt said. "All this preliminary work represents a good and critical first step toward construction of this important transportation asset."
CDOT is working on the $116 million design/build project with the contractor team it selected: Kraemer North America (Kraemer) and Tsiouvaras Simmons Holderness (TSH).
Kraemer-TSH has been issued a Notice to Proceed, and design engineering is underway. “Design/build” is a strategy aimed at giving contractors construction flexibility based on what they find in the field. Watt has previously estimated that about 80 percent of the interchange's final design will occur this way. CDOT also used a design/build strategy with COSMIX.
The official start of the project will follow a public open house and groundbreaking later this spring.
The planned upgrades include a new interchange and ramps, as well as a curve-reducing freeway realignment between Colorado Avenue on the north and South Nevada Avenue on the south.
Westside Pioneer/press release