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CDOT reveals plan to use express lanes on I-25 - KOAA.com | Continuous News | Colorado Springs and Pueblo

CDOT reveals plan to use express lanes on I-25

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COLORADO SPRINGS -

The Colorado Department of Transportation outlined a plan to use toll lanes on I-25 from Monument to Castle Rock during an open house Thursday night.

CDOT said it plans to make the two new lanes planned for NB and SB I-25 express lanes. Drivers in the other two lanes would be still be able to drive without paying a toll.

The express lanes would cost drivers a toll if they choose to drive in the new lanes, which had some drivers who attended the open house upset. 

"Tolls are just a pain. I despise them. Let's get all the lanes in place," said Colorado Springs resident Dave Clarke.

Voters in El Paso County approved $25 million in funding to cover the total cost of the project, which one person who attended the meeting called misleading.

"They never mentioned in that ballot that there would be tolls. That came out afterward.  That's a 'bait and switch' as far as I'm concerned," said Colorado Springs resident Jeanne Marshall.

CDOT said the tolls would be used to cover ongoing maintenance along the road, instead of providing the funding to get the project started. CDOT has not yet said how much the tolls will cost.

The project's total cost is expected to be $350 million. With the $25 million from El Paso County funding, transportation officials say state and federal money should cover the rest of the cost.

"A big portion of that would come from state funds--250 million dollars, which comes from legislation passed earlier in the year," said CDOT spokesperson Tamara Rollinson. "The transportation commission has pledged to use that as long as other funding sources come to fruition."

Transportation officials also said the new lanes would mostly be built in the existing median between the northbound and southbound lanes. CDOT also said it also plans to widen the shoulders along the interstate.

The meeting in Colorado Springs comes soon after state officials announced crews could break ground on the project sooner than expected.

CDOT said it's moving up construction a full year, breaking ground in November 2018.

The project is expected to be complete in 2021.

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