U.S. Hwy 85 road construction in Douglas County accelerated
Motorists traveling north and south along U.S. Highway 85 between Louviers and Sedalia will see the 2.5-mile, two-lane stretch of roadway reconstructed and widened to a four-lane, divided highway. This, thanks to County voter-approval of Ballot Issue 1A last November and a new cost-sharing intergovernmental agreement (IGA) with the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT).
Douglas County’s contribution to the project was $5.5 million as part of an initial IGA with CDOT in 2012 to fund final design costs and right-of-way acquisition for this segment of U.S. 85. The IGA with CDOT adopted by the County Commissioners last month requires an additional $2.5 million County contribution – funded by revenue generated by the passage of 1A last November – bringing the County’s total share of this more than $40 million project to $8 million. Construction on the project is expected to begin in April.
“In Douglas County we have a history of partnering with CDOT, as well as others, to improve the State Highway System we all use within our County,” said Commissioner and Vice Chair Lora Thomas. “We recognize the need to cost-share in these primary corridors in order to sustain our mobility and improve safety,” Thomas said.
Ballot Issue 1A asked Douglas County voters last November to annually redirect approximately $13 million of existing revenue from the Justice Center Fund to countywide transportation improvements identified in the County’s 2040 Transportation Master Plan.
“What voters approved in November has already accelerated our ability to invest in our citizens’ top spending priority without a tax increase and without compromising public safety,” said County Commissioner and Board Chair Roger Partridge. “The existing redirected revenue will support countywide growth management-related transportation projects, consistent with citizen feedback we received in our 2017 and 2019 countywide surveys.”
“Douglas County is recognized for our ability to leverage multiple transportation funding sources from federal, state and local governments, and private sector partners,” said Commissioner Abe Laydon. “The additional revenue from this voter-approved ballot measure will further our partnering opportunities on regionally significant roads in Douglas County – including municipal and state roads,” Laydon said.