Colorado Department of Transportation

  

  • Road project needs repairs almost immediately
  • Smoke causes concerns for Coloradans
  • Officials consider statewide graduation standards
downtown Olathe
Flickr/jstephenconn

The town of Olathe recently received a large grant for a walkway expansion project.

Olathe got nearly $226,000 through the federal Transportation Alternative Program. The Colorado Department of Transportation distributes the funds to communities.

"The scope of the project is to provide additional walkway for a section of town that has a high volume of pedestrian traffic," Patty Gabriel, Olathe’s town administrator, said.  "And, it would connect our Olathe Middle & High School with our Olathe Elementary School."

Amtrak’s Southwest Chief is a long-distance passenger train that travels daily from Chicago to Los Angeles along the Mountain Route of the historic Santa Fe Trail.  Along the way, it knits together rural communities, like La Junta, Colorado and Raton, New Mexico and connects them to larger cities, like Albuquerque and Kansas City.  The route is at risk though.

The Colorado Department of Transportation is holding an open house in Grand Junction on Wednesday. 

CDOT said the purpose of the meeting is to get feedback on how to improve local and regional transit. The  information from the meeting will be included in the department’s statewide transit plan, according to CDOT. 

One of agency’s newer programs, set to launch early next year, is a bus service to connect the Front Range to the Western Slope.

Red Mountain Pass, Highway 550, Ouray
Laura Palmisano

In January a massive landslide closed Highway 550 through Red Mountain Pass for a month while crews cleared debris. 

That stretch of Colorado’s Million Dollar Highway connects the city of Ouray to the town of Silverton. Construction on the highway resumed in April to repair damage and place chain covers over the areas most susceptible to rock movement.

Last week, Ouray declared a state of economic emergency as a result of the natural disaster.

Dan Bender/La Plata County Sheriff's Office

Update January 27: Technical climbing crews were on hand at the side of recent rockslides along Red Mountain Pass/US 550, installing wire cable netting to stabilize boulders that continue to plague the road below. 

The alternate route south toward Durango, Cortez and beyond is SH 62 to SH 145 through Telluride, and US 160.The Colorado Department of Transportation says that work will continue through at least Tuesday, and there's still no estimated time for when the road could re-open.