Glenwood bridge project ‘notching up’ as second phase begins

John Stroud
Glenwood Springs Post Independent
Workers have been busy this week wrapping up construction of the temporary walkway that's attached to the Grand Avenue bridge, and is expected to be in use starting next Tuesday when work begins to dismantle the existing pedestrian bridge.
John Stroud | Post Independent

river users info meeting Monday

River guides, anglers, kayakers, rafters, stand-up paddle boarders and other river users are invited to a meeting to discuss river closures that are planned during the Grand Avenue bridge construction project, 4:30 p.m. Monday, Feb. 29, at the Glenwood Canyon Brewpub.

The Grand Avenue bridge project enters the second phase of construction starting next week, bringing with it several noticeable new impacts for anyone traveling by vehicle and foot on both sides of the Colorado River.

“The project is definitely turning it up a notch,” Colorado Department of Transportation bridge project spokesman Tom Newland said.

One of the first major milestones of the project is the completion of the new temporary walkway, anticipated to open Tuesday. Workers have been busy attaching the walkway to the existing Highway 82/Grand Avenue bridge for the past several weeks.

For the next year, it will be the only downtown pedestrian crossing over Interstate 70, the river and the railroad tracks between Seventh and Sixth streets as the existing pedestrian bridge is removed and replaced with a new, wider bridge with both elevator and stair access to Seventh Street.

Also, starting this week, crews began clearing trees on the west side of the south bridge landing between Seventh and Eighth streets to make way for a major underground utility upgrade that is part of the bridge project.

That will result in some difficult access at times for businesses in the 700 block of Grand Avenue on both sides of the bridge for the next three months, Newland said. Access will be maintained at all times during business hours, he said.

The other big impact that will hit the first weekend in March will be a full closure of the eastbound I-70 on and off ramps at Exit 116 while utility work is being done in the vicinity.

That will mean the only eastbound I-70 access and exit will be at Exit 114 in West Glenwood for three consecutive days from March 4 to 6.

A similar closure of the westbound on and off ramps at Exit 116 will be in effect later in the month, as work moves to the north side of the interchange.

A combination of that work and work by the city of Glenwood Springs to build a new wastewater lift station and by the Hot Springs Pool to construct a new pool discharge pipeline through the east end of Two Rivers Park means the pedestrian access at that end of the park is closed for the next several weeks at least.