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Transportation

North Interstate 25 Improvement Projects

Background

Interstate 25 is the primary north-south interstate route in Northern Colorado and is part of the National Freight Corridor. This interstate is a primary route for commuters, travelers and freight and the average daily traffic count in Northern Colorado is over 75,000 vehicles per day. Over the past 20 years, Northern Colorado has seen a 425% population increase. With that, comes increasing travel demand as well as needed maintenance and repairs to this corridor. With the population continuing to rise, neglecting needed improvements to this section of the corridor poses traffic congestion and safety issues, and negatively impacts local and regional economies.

2016 TIGER Grant Award & North I-25 Express Lanes Project

  • CDOT recently awarded $15M in Transportation Investment Generating Economic recovery (TIGER) funds to improve I-25 between SH-14 (Mulberry) and SH-402 (South Loveland)
  • Helps CDOT and local agencies reach $237M for expansion
  • Improvements will increase capacity by adding an Express Lane (managed lane) in both directions, replace four aging bridges and widen an additional four bridges
  • Total project cost is $237M
  • Improves access to regional transit
  • Improves regional bus transit performance by reducing each total trip time by 15 minutes by adding new bus slip ramps from I-25 to a new Park and Ride at Kendall Parkway
  • Creates new pedestrian and bicycle connections under I-25 at Kendall Parkway
  • Helps connect regional trails under I-25 and serve as a wildlife corridor
  • Local matching funds plus TIGER grant award accelerates I-25 improvements by 15 years
  • Construction estimated to begin early 2017 and be completed by December 2020
  • Express lanes (managed lanes) include toll, high-occupant vehicle, and transit uses to reduce congestion and delay, and improve traveler safety

CDOT Information:
https://www.codot.gov/projects/north-i-25
https://www.codot.gov/projects/north-i-25/north-i-25-express-lanes-1/north-i-25-express-lanes

Regional Collaboration

In 2013, an I-25 Coalition was formed to help manage and accelerate improvements to the corridor. Six Northern Colorado communities, Weld and Larimer Counties, CDOT, Chambers of Commerce and private businesses have all been collaborating to help bring these improvements to fruition. Local agencies and private development committed to $25M in matching funds for this project.

Local/Regional Efforts Made to Date to Accelerate Improvements to I-25

  • (2011) Fort Collins participation in the I-25 North Environmental Impact Statement. This multi-year, multiple-agency transportation and environmental planning effort identified roadway capacity and transit needs and solutions for the northern I-25 Corridor. City of Fort Collins staff participated on the project Technical Committee and its subcommittees. Significant community outreach was performed as part of the I-25 EIS.
  • (2013-current) I-25 North Project (CDOT). CDOT identified three projects for design work on the northern I-25 Corridor. One segment under design is I-25 from SH-392 to SH-14.
  • (2013-current) Fort Collins participation in I-25 Coalition. In the fall of 2013, elected officials and their designees from three counties and fourteen communities along the I-25 Corridor in Northern Colorado formed the I-25 Coalition. The I-25 Coalition has grown steadily, with a current distribution list of almost 90 including representatives. The Coalition's primary goal is to accelerate construction of a third lane in each direction of I-25 as identified in the I-25 North Project (from State Highway 6 to State Highway 14).
  • (2014) North Front Range Metropolitan Planning Organization (NFRMPO) votes to allocate $5 million in regional transportation funds to two I-25 related projects:
    • I-25 truck climbing lane on Berthoud Hill ($3M)
    • Improvements to I-25 bridge over Crossroads Boulevard ($2M)
  • (2014) Fix North I-25 Business Alliance is formed by the Northern Colorado Legislative Alliance (NCLA) with the purpose of urging CDOT and the legislature to make timely improvements to I-25 roadway capacity in northern Colorado.
  • (2014) CDOT completes the North I-25 Commuter Rail Update, re-confirming and making amendments to the commuter rail solution identified in the North I-25 EIS. Fort Collins' South Transit Center is identified as the northern terminus for the Commuter rail service.
  • (September 2015) CDOT launches Bustang, an inter-regional transit service connecting northern Colorado to the Denver Metro area. Bustang was created to help alleviate congestion and offer more travel choices on the state's major interstate highway corridors.
  • (October 2015) Council passes Resolution 2015-089 and a letter to Governor Hickenlooper urging support and submission of CDOT's application for National Disaster Resilience Competition funds.
  • (November 2015) Council passes Resolution 2015-100 supporting Larimer County's proposal to temporarily reallocate a portion of their General Fund Mill Levy to the County Road and Bridge Fund with the express purpose of making improvements to northern I-25. It is anticipated these funds will total nearly $5 million over the course of the five year period.
  • (November 2015) The I-25 Front Range On Track (FRONT) group held a day-long summit in Loveland, Colorado with elected officials, State, Federal, and local leaders to discuss ways to accelerate plans for implementing commuter rail in the northern I-25 Corridor as identified in the I-25 EIS.
  • (December 15, 2015) Council to consider Resolution 2015-TBD supporting the I-25 Coalition efforts urging the Colorado legislature to make timely improvements to northern I-25.
  • 2016: Council agrees to remit funds equal to the increased local share of County property taxes to be used as matching funds for I-25 improvements.

Larimer County Mill Levy Collaboration

Private and local contributions: ($25M total)
City of Fort Collins $2.25M
City of Loveland $2M
Town of Berthoud $500K
Town of Johnstown $1M
Larimer County $10M
Weld County $2M
Town of Timnath $500K
Town of Windsor $1M
McWhinney (private developer) $6M

The I-25 Coalition has grown steadily, with a current distribution list of almost 90 including representatives from Adams, Larimer and Weld counties, Berthoud, Broomfield, Dacono, Erie, Firestone, Fort Collins, Frederick, Johnstown, Loveland, Mead, Northglenn, Timnath, Thornton and Windsor as well as CDOT, businesses and other interested agencies. The Coalition's primary goal is to accelerate construction of a third lane in each direction of I-25 as identified in the I-25 North Project (from State Highway 6 to State Highway 14). Capacity improvements to the I-25 Corridor in Northern Colorado will address current and forecast congestion and safety issues posed by growing traffic demand in the region.

Other I-25 Projects Underway

  • I-25 Berthoud Hill Climbing Lane: adding a third inside climbing lane on southbound Berthoud Hill. Large trucks limited to outside two lanes. Completion date December 2016
  • I-25/Crossroads Boulevard bridge: widening and raising I-25 bridges at Crossroads Boulevard to improve safety and reduce congestion delays. Completion date TBD

I-25 Transit Options: Bustang Express Bus Service to Denver

  • CDOT launched Bustang transit service from Northern Colorado to Denver in 2015.
  • Connects in NoCo at Transfort Downtown Transit Center, I-25/Harmony Park and Ride, and I-25/US-34 Park and Ride
  • Takes passengers to Denver Union Station in downtown Denver
  • Over the Road coaches include wi-fi and charging ports for electronic devices
  • Schedules and fares available at www.ridebustang.com

Long Range Plans for I-25

  • The I-25 North Environmental Impact Statement was adopted in 2011. This multi-year, multiple-agency transportation and environmental planning effort identified roadway capacity and transit needs and solutions for the northern I-25 Corridor.
  • Ultimate improvements include capacity widening, interchange redesign, and commuter rail
  • North I-25 EIS

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