In September 2016, the Town of Basalt began constructing a pedestrian underpass beneath State Highway (SH) 82 at the intersection of Basalt Avenue. The project will provide safety improvements for all modes of transportation by allowing non-motorist traffic to pass under the highway.
The project is located near SH 82 mile point 23.1 in Basalt and the completed underpass will connect the Roaring Fork Transportation Authority parking lot with the Basalt Store front and Bus Rapid Transit stations located at the intersection. Residents will also have easier access to schools located to the north and south of the project.
The new underpass is designed to be 140 feet long, up to 9 feet tall, and 16 feet wide. The construction of the underground path, combined with the installation of new traffic signals and an upgraded storm water drainage system, is anticipated to improve the flow of traffic and pedestrian safety along the highway. The Town of Basalt awarded Oldcastle/United companies the $6.2 million bid for this project. The completion date remains on schedule for late October 2017
As of mid-January, construction crews have completed a portion of the planned storm drain improvements, along with the majority of the excavation for the first phase of the underpass. Concrete pours for tunnel walls and slabs are underway. The next major activities include the completion of concrete pours for the North Phase’s trail and retaining walls, setting the precast top to the underpass, as well as completion of the highway backfill of the north half of the tunnel. Soon thereafter, temporary asphalt paving will be placed to move the work zone to the opposite side of SH 82, marking a significant milestone for the project.
The South Phase remains on schedule to begin in March, barring any significant weather delays.
The 13-month project began in late September and is scheduled for completion in late October 2017. The tentative schedule of major phases of work planned for the project includes:
September 2016 – March 2017: North Phase
Temporary bus stop placements – COMPLETE
Building temporary lanes for vehicle traffic – COMPLETE
Removal of asphalt and underpass excavation – COMPLETE
Retaining wall construction along Basalt Avenue – IN PROGRESS, final retaining wall will be constructed in February.
March 2017 – August 2017: South Phase
Asphalt, excavation and retaining wall work
Final pavement, signals, striping, drainage & safety work
Reactivation of bus stations
September 2017 – October 2017: Final Phase
Curb, gutter and guardrail installation
Final striping and landscaping
Normal working hours for the project will be Monday through Friday, from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m., with seasonal adjustments for daylight hours. No work is planned on holidays or weekends.
Additional impacts to travelers on SH 82 should be minimal. Five lanes of traffic will be maintained throughout the duration of the project with temporary asphalt pavement.
Traffic speeds will be reduced to 35 mph in the work zone. Please use caution while traveling through the construction zone and follow flaggers’ directions. A width restriction of 11 feet is in place during working hours.