BLENDE – A new cone zone on Highway 50 through Blende is causing some complaints among locals. Two of the four lanes on the road are blocked so crews can upgrade drainage pipes under the road. There is also an intersection blocked requiring a detour.
“A lot of people unhappy with it. It’s an inconvenience,” said Barber, Matthew Mora. Businesses owners and workers along the work site are hearing from customers who say it is a challenge figuring out the barricades. “Have to take alternative routes, take the back roads, figuring it out that way,” said liquor store owner, Jeremy Felzien. Drivers are also complaining about the added traffic in neighborhoods from the detour. Out of the barber shop window, Mora says he’s also seen close calls with drivers trying to pull onto the road. “The biggest problem is people exiting the shopping center they can’t see what’s coming from the west.”
CDOT leaders say months of planning and approval go into construction zone routes, barricades and detours. There is often an adjustment period with changes like this. Local workers have seen the situation getting better. Days back, they noticed some drivers trying to create their own shortcuts instead of following the CDOT route. ‘At first people were trying to find the quickest way around this and they were cutting through the parking lot. That’s eased up a lot,” said Mora . CDOT does monitor for problems and will make changes if necessary.
“It’s an inconvenience, but it’s something that needs to be done out here,” said Mora. Despite the issues, most also accept the work has to happen. “You roll with it. Something that’s going to happen regardless,” said Felzien.