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Rockfall blasting to close I-70 near Idaho Springs Dec. 18

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Posted at 12:26 PM, Dec 17, 2019
and last updated 2019-12-17 14:26:32-05

CLEAR CREEK COUNTY — The Colorado Department of Transportation plans rockfall blasting that will close I-70 in both directions near Idaho Springs between Dumont/Downieville (Exit 234) and Beaver Brook/Floyd Hill (Exit 248).

This is happening from 9 a.m. until noon Wednesday, December 18. There will be an additional eastbound I-70 traffic stop at Silverthorne (Exit 205) beginning at 8:15 a.m.

Local traffic will have access to Idaho Springs. Anyone driving across the entire I-70 mountain corridor should plan their travels for earlier in the morning or later in the afternoon, or take an alternate route to avoid this three-hour closure. Motorists should expect significant delays during the closure.

This work needs to be done before installing rock mesh to improve public safety in an area where two rockslides occurred in late November. The blasting and scaling stabilize the rock face. Early snowstorms and moisture have loosened rocks causing the immediate need to conduct rockfall mitigation work.

Travel restrictions:

  • All westbound traffic will be stopped on I-70 at the Beaver Brook/Floyd Hill (Exit 248) beginning at 9 a.m. and lasting up to noon on Dec. 18. Truckers and all thru traffic will be turned around at this point. Local motorists with valid identification showing Clear Creek County residency will be allowed past this exit to State Highway 103 (downtown Idaho Springs Exit 240).
  • All eastbound traffic east of Silverthorne will be turned around on I-70 at the Dumont/Downieville (Exit 234) beginning at 9 a.m.
  • All eastbound traffic west of Silverthorne will be turned around on I-70 at Silverthorne (Exit 205) beginning at 8:15 a.m.
  • Westbound I-70 is expected to be closed until noon.
  • Eastbound I-70 is expected to reopen before the westbound side following the blast, rock scaling and cleanup work.
  • Stanley Road will also be closed during the blast and will reopen shortly after the blast.
  • Loveland Pass will be closed at A-Basin beginning 8:15 a.m. but is expected to reopen fairly soon after the rock blast.

CDOT highly advises thru traffic to avoid driving the I-70 mountain corridor during the closure. The alternate route for westbound traffic will take about two hours. This route is C-470 east to US 285 south to CO 9 North, which takes you through Frisco back to I-70 westbound. Motorists headed to Black Hawk or Central City should use US 6 from Golden.