Grandview-area residents and business owners were less than thrilled earlier this month after learning the Colorado Department of Transportations plans to close the west entrance of County Road 232.
They said it would jeopardize businesses and endanger children walking to catch their school bus. They took their concerns to CDOT, and the agency listened.
The entrance will remain open until the completion of a frontage road extending to Three Springs Boulevard likely to take years since the project hasnt been funded.
I feel like a large entity such as CDOT which has a tendency to be very bureaucratic and impersonal was responsive, said Stewart Leach, the owner of Skyway Auto, who appealed to CDOT about the planned closure.
The closure, intended to improve U.S. Highway 160s safety, would have rerouted vehicles accessing the area through the Bridge to Nowhere. Now, CDOT plans to modify the entrance to right-turn-only access.
Currently, the state highways westbound traffic can turn left onto County Road 232.
A key element of an interchange is to remove the left-turning movements off the highway, said Mike McVaugh, CDOTs engineering director for Southwest Colorado. Thats your most dangerous movement for a vehicle to make.
McVaugh said he is concerned about rear-end accidents at the mouth of the entrance because vehicles entering the highway from the new on-ramp will have only 1,800 feet before encountering slower vehicles preparing to turn.
Coming down the on-ramp, youre accelerating, and youre paying attention to the cars behind you, not in front, he said. Spacing is very tight, and the potential for a rear-end accident is great.
Leach, owner of Skyway Auto, said he agrees with McVaughs safety concerns, but he still would like to keep access open, even after the frontage road is complete.
Im glad theyre leaving it open for now, Leach said. I feel like it keeps the Grandview area viable, and it keeps the residents safer and more comfortable.