Highway 145 set for $10M upgrade

Plan to improve perilous section

Colorado Highway 145 between Cortez and Dolores will receive $10.2 million in upgrades beginning next year.

The CDOT project will resurface the 9.4-mile section of roadway from MP 0 (at the junction with U.S. 160) north to the to the top of the bridge at Dolores.

Crews will begin in Dolores in March or April and are scheduled to complete the $8.5 million project by August, reports CDOT representative Nancy Shanks.

"It will greatly improve the surface condition by applying a 1-inch leveling course of asphalt, followed up with a 2-inch overlay of new asphalt," Shanks said.

In 2015, the dangerous, curving intersection of Highway 145 and County Road P (Milar's Corner) is slated for a $1.7 million upgrade. Acceleration and deceleration lanes are planned, as well as turn lanes for safer access on and off County Road P from Highway 145.

What the exact improvements will be made depends on right-of-way acquisitions, and environmental clearances needed to widen that section of road.

"One plus is that the resurfacing will have already been done for Highway 145 when the intersection work begins in 2015," Shanks said.

Montezuma County is contributing $83,000 toward the Road P intersection improvements, representing 5 percent of the costs.

The projects are part of the Responsible Acceleration of Maintenance and Partnerships (RAMP) program dedicating $580 million to expand the statewide transportation system.

Under the RAMP program, CDOT will fund multiyear projects based on year of expenditure, rather than saving for the full amount of a project before construction begins.

The deadline for detailed RAMP applications passed on July 2. CDOT received a total of 166 applications requesting more than $1.54 billion, more than two times the funding available. For the transportation partnerships program (public-private and public-public), CDOT received 127 applications, totaling more than $1.36 billion in requests.

"We have been able to extend the reach of our RAMP funds because local governments contributed a total of $118 million to these projects," said CDOT executive director Don Hunt.