I-25 North Express Lanes: Mead to Fort Collins

Learn More About Changes to Local Frontage Roads

Fall 2021 Project Update Video

The I-25 North Express Lanes Project crews have been hard at work this summer and fall. Check out this video to see all the progress that's been made so far in 2021!

CO 56 is OPEN at I-25!

The Weld County Road 44/Colorado Highway 56 crossing under I-25 is OPEN! 

This closure time was accelerated from 140-days to approximately 115 days.
The project team’s goal was to have the interchange open in time for Thanksgiving travel and with the hard work of the Ralph L. Wadsworth/SEMA construction team and cooperation of good weather, the team was able to deliver.

CDOT and the I-25 North Express Lanes Project team closed CO 56 over I-25 on Sunday, Aug. 1 and closed the northbound I-25 on- and off-ramps at CO 56 shortly after. Similar to CO 56, the northbound ramps were also reopened ahead of schedule.
 
The CO 56 interchange area was the most dangerous section of interstate in the northern Colorado region. This closure was required for crews to reconstruct the interchange into a safer and more efficient configuration. While the roadway was closed, construction crews “flipped” the interchange, and I-25 now traverses over CO 56. The new configuration removed unsafe curves for a safer traveling experience while improving traffic flow.
 
An extensive list of construction activities, in addition to reconfiguring the interchange, were performed during this closure:
  • Two new I-25 bridges over CO 56
  • Two new roundabouts and sidewalks
  • Mobility hub infrastructure
  • Drainage work, utility installation and asphalt paving
Although CO 56 is open, additional work and intermittent travel impacts at the interchange are still necessary for some remaining work elements. The interchange will be complete in summer/fall 2022. When the I-25: Berthoud to Johnstown Project is complete in 2024, a mobility hub located near the CO 56 interchange will also include Bustang service to/from Fort Collins and Union Station in Denver, 130 parking spaces (40 dedicated to carpoolers), and electric vehicle charging stations.

Great Western Railroad Bridge Timelapse 

The Great Western Railroad Bridge was constructed in two phases/halves offline about 20 feet south of the railroad alignment. Once constructed, the existing halves of the bridge were removed and the newly constructed portions were rolled into place. This timelapse shows the western portion of the bridge going into place. Due to the unique phasing of the roadway work, no I-25 lane closures were needed to either construct the new bridge or demolish the old structure.

I-25 North and US 34 Traffic Phasing

Have you ever wondered how crews on the I-25 North Express Lanes Project are able to build a new highway without closing the existing highway? When traveling through the I-25 North Express Lanes project, motorists are often navigating a series of intricate traffic shifts. The traffic shifts allow crews to safely maintain traffic and complete the construction in phases. This graphic highlights the traffic phasing at I-25 North and US 34 in Loveland. Work in this area began along the median in fall 2019. In Spring 2020, all traffic was shifted to the southbound lanes so that construction could take place on the northbound lanes. This year, crews are working in the median again. Finally, traffic will shift to the northbound lanes while crews build the southbound lanes. When navigating these work areas, please remember to be patient, drive distraction free and always and slow for the cone zone.

Click the timeline above or use the arrows to explore the traffic phases.

There’s no denying that our daily lives have changed drastically in the last two weeks, and in some cases, lives have been turned upside down. Many sacrifices are being made from closing businesses and schooling children at home to canceling events and moving work operations to our homes where possible.

While telecommuting might work for some occupations, construction clearly isn’t one of those. Without people physically on-site to do the work, the I-25 North Express Lanes from Berthoud to Fort Collins would never become a reality. But while road work is progressing, for now, that’s not to say it is totally business as usual on the job site.

Here are some of the things work crews are doing a little differently these days:

  • Crew members are refraining from going into jobsite trailers or project offices unless absolutely necessary, and when they have to, they aren’t doing so in groups.
  • Daily safety briefings are being done with just a couple of people rather than the entire crew.
  • Paperwork is being done in the cab of pickup trucks and daily logs of work activities filled out at home.
  • Project management meetings are being conducted via phone.
  • Everyone is being told to NOT report to work if they feel ill, and anyone who doesn’t feel well on the job is immediately sent home.
  • All office staff and non-essential personnel who can work from home are doing so.
  • Though all workers in the field wear gloves, hand tools are being cleaned more vigilantly and workers are instructed to wash or sanitize their hands after removing gloves.
  • Workers are bringing their own water bottle to the jobsite to avoid using a common water cooler.
  • Portable restrooms are being sanitized more frequently.
  • Steering wheels and machinery equipment controls are being wiped down, particularly if different people will be moving in and out of the equipment throughout the day.

View Traffic Impacts

Communities along the north I-25 corridor are expanding rapidly, contributing to major economic growth in northern Colorado. The Colorado Department of Transportation will support this growth by delivering the I-25 North Express Lanes Project. This project will extend from Highway 56 in Mead to Mulberry Street in Fort Collins.

This project brings economic, environmental and quality of life benefits for northern Coloradans by:

 Making safety improvements to reduce the number of crashes and fatalities.

 Decreasing travel time and increasing trip reliability.

 Reducing emissions and improving freight efficiency.

 Employing congestion management and safety technology to improve the travel experience.

 Rebuilding aging and obsolete infrastructure.

 Improving bicycle, pedestrian and transit connectivity.


Learn more about the corridor improvements by clicking on the areas below:

Express Lanes: Northbound and southbound Express Lanes with HOV option will be added from US 56 to just past Prospect Road

 Timeline

  • Construction began between CO 402 and Mulberry in 2018.
  • Work between CO 56 to CO 402 is expected to begin construction in late 2019.
  • Once more funding is identified and secured, construction will begin from CO 66 to CO 56.