Cyclists and Colorado Department of Transportation push for replacing bridges and safety changes along Interstate 25 in Denver

by: /Gabriela Vidal, CBS Colorado

An overdue upgrade of two of downtown Denver’s bridges could also bring some safety improvements for pedestrians and cyclists.

“I think the most important thing is we don’t have a lot of east west bike routes that go over I-25 in north Denver on the west side, so it’s important that we have safe connections,” said Allen Cowgill.


Cowgill is with the Denver Bicycle Lobby, a group that has been pushing for safer roads for cyclists, especially along dangerous stretches of roadways like the 23rd Avenue bridge over Interstate 25.

“It’s pretty scary,” he said. “I’ve seen people run red lights, almost hit me over the years. I’ve seen drivers that will chose to not really pay attention when they’re coming off the highway.”

Now, replacing the 23rd Avenue bridge and the bridge on Speer just over I-25 are both part of a newer CDOT project. On Monday, CDOT held an open house to hear residents’ and motorists’ feedback about the project study.

“They have a low vertical clearance, and they are at the end of their use of life,” said CDOT Spokesperson Tamara Rollison. “We have a range of improvements and a range of alternatives that we’re looking at.”

“I’d like to see 23rd Avenue be a lot safer. I used to commute to downtown over that every day to work, and now I use it often to get to downtown on the weekends or running errands to get groceries and such,” said Cowgill.


Rollison says the number one priority for this project is improving safety.

“Better connections for pedestrians, better connections for cyclists, [and] for multimodal users in the project area,” she said. “Right now, we really want to hear what the public has to say about this project.”

Cowgill says some changes he would like to see are making more sidewalks along these bridges and removing on ramp access to cars along 23rd Avenue.

“Every other month a driver will be coming off of I-25 and not be paying attention on the off ramp and will almost hit me coming into the bike lane,” said Cowgill. “There’s four on ramps within a stretch of a mile there, and I think it’s important that we talk about whether we should have the on and off ramps there or should it just be a bridge for folks moving from the north side into downtown Denver.


CDOT plans to get more feedback from residents this upcoming summer, with additional study and planning set for 2025. Rollison says they hope to start the construction phase of the project by 2026.

by: /Gabriela Vidal, CBS Colorado

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