Drivers using Interstate 25 in Colorado look set to benefit from shorter journey times with the opening of around 29km of express lanes. The section of the highway lies to the south of Denver, between Castle Rock and Monument, and the highway upgrade has cost US$419 million.
Work on the project started in 2018 with the aim of cutting congestion on this stretch of the highway, which has suffered from increasingly long traffic delays at peak periods in recent years. The new express lanes will be tolled in the future. However, the tolls will not be enforced until the planned testing phase has been completed, so drivers will be able to use the facilities without charge initially.
The work has been needed as population growth in the area has seen the section of highway suffering frequent delays at peak periods. The project has been overseen by the Colorado Department of Transportation and saw two additional toll lanes to be added to this section of I-25, which is also known as the Gap.
This stretch of I-25 had just four lanes and was not able to cope with traffic demand. But the work has added extra tolled lanes, providing the additional capacity required. Bridges and interchanges have also been upgraded as part of the project, while wider shoulders have been added. New drainage and wildlife crossings also were constructed.