Colorado Avenue paving work stays on schedule

       The paving project through Old Colorado City was “going well” this week, according to Old Colorado City Associates (OCCA) merchants group President Jim Heikes.
       The work is part of a city-contracted project that is milling down to the road base, then pouring a two-inch asphalt overlay along Colorado Avenue between Walnut and 30th streets. Of the three areas of the project, the final part from 24th to 30th, which includes Old Town, is called “Area 3.”
       Midway through the week, Heikes said the contractor, Schmidt Construc-tion, had told him Area 3 was close to a day ahead of schedule. Area 1 (Walnut to 15th) is done, and Area 2 (15th to 24th) should be finished this week, according to the city schedule.
       Going into this week, the planned completion date for Area 3, pending weather and equipment issues, was Sept. 19.
       Other than saying no to weekend work because that's their busiest time, Old Colorado City merchants have urged a speedy project because while it's going on, no on-street parking is allowed.
       The OCCA request - made at a public meeting with City Streets officials last week - was for paving work to occur from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. daily, before most shoppers are on hand.
       The final ruling from Traffic Engineering was to start at 7 on the westbound side (because most traffic is going east then) and stop working there at 3:30 p.m. On the eastbound side, work is from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. The exceptions are the 26th and 30th street intersections which may only be worked on between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m.
       Despite the dust, noise, smell and parking shortfalls, Heikes said he does not think the impact has been too great. Occurring after Labor Day, “it's kind of a slow time anyway,” he said. “And shoppers are using our parking lots [which were repaved and striped before Labor Day]. Sure it's hurt a little bit, but not that much.”

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