NEWS: Wednesday July 28, 2010

Jul 28th @ 9:05 am in News by Scott Staley

The Cultural and Recreational Director of the Bill Heddles Recreation Center in Delta has made a deal with herself that she won’t retire until the center is improved. Mountain Valley News writes that Wilma Ervin met with the public last week to update them on the cost, time frame, and logistics of the pool expansion. The biggest hurdle is funding. Ervin continues to seek grant money and donations to fund the project.
Source: Mountain Valley News (Posted 10:16a)

The EPA will be in Montrose for the next few days as they remove toxic wastes from the now-defunct Elizabeth Mining and Development Inc. northwest of town. According to the Daily Press, waste removed includes hydrochloric acid among other things. An investigation into the facility was launched in 2006, which lead to the indictment of owners Joseph and Steven Casebolt on charges relating to hazardous waste disposal and fraud. Currently, Montrose County taxpayers are footing the bill for the cleanup, but the EPA will try to recoup cleanup expenses.
Source: Daily Press (Posted 10:16a)

The Colorado Department of Transportation has begun a major road improvement project on I-70B (also known as Highway 6 & 50) between 24 Road and 24 ¾ Road. The project involves concrete reconstruction, with two additional driving lanes; a new storm sewer system; an updated signal system; utility relocation, curb, gutter, sidewalk and landscaping.

“This section of I-70 B sees an above-average number of accidents,” CDOT Region 3 Transportation Director Dave Eller said. “Adding lanes, improving access points and upgrading signals will greatly improve safety and mobility for motorists and pedestrians.”

The project was contracted to Lawson Construction of Loveland for $9.36 million, $4 million of which was funded by *FASTER legislation (Funding Advancements for Surface Transportation and Economic Recovery). Monies collected under the FASTER Safety Fund are to be used for construction, reconstruction, or maintenance projects that the Transportation Commission, a county or municipality determine are needed to enhance the safety of a state highway, county road, or city street.

SCHEDULE: Mainline paving (not including frontage roads) is scheduled for completion in November 2010, with a winter project suspension from November 17 through the end of February 2011. Work will then resume in March 2011 to complete the remaining items for a scheduled completion by mid-April 2011. However, there is a contractor incentive built into the project for early completion. If the contractor completes the project ahead of their 160-day schedule (ahead of a mid-April completion), they will receive $12,000 for each day, for a total of $410,000 (the maximum incentive the contractor can receive is 5 percent of the contract bid items).

The work will be phased to provide two lanes of traffic in both directions continuously through the construction zone. The first phase will be to remove and replace the westbound lanes, placing both directions of traffic on the eastbound lanes. The second phase will relocate traffic onto the new driving surface on the westbound lanes while the eastbound lanes are replaced. Finally, directional traffic will be relocated to the two outside lanes while the center turn lane is replaced.

Short traffic stops may occur and will be kept to a minimum;

The speed limit through the project area will be reduced from 45 mph to 35 mph;

Access will be maintained to businesses in the project work area – some accesses will be altered at times to facilitate construction activities;

The three entrances to the Mesa Mall off of I-70B will be closed at separate times during construction – two entrances will be open at all times;

For safety, left turns in the project area can be made only at the signalized intersections. (In addition, many of the “cut-through” turnoffs onto the side access roads will also be closed.)

CDOT and Lawson Construction greatly appreciate your patience and cooperation while going through the work zone. Thank you for going Slow for the Cone Zone.

Those with questions or concerns about the project, or who want to receive updates on the project may contact Tom Newland, Project Public Information Manager, at (970) 773-3457 or e-mail

Updated information regarding traffic impacts on this or other CDOT projects is available at or by calling 511. To receive project updates via e-mail, visit and click on the cell-phone icon in the upper right-hand corner. The link takes you to a list of items you can subscribe to, including Northwest Colorado.

*(FASTER Bridge Fund monies are to be used to repair or replace poor rated bridges on the state highway system.) Additional information on FASTER is accessible at:
Press Release   (Posted 11:07a)