In April 2016, the City of Wheat Ridge initiated an Environmental Assessment (EA) study and Access Management review for the widening of Wadsworth Boulevard. The study will review environmental impacts associated with transportation improvements planned for Wadsworth between 35th Avenue and I-70.
The EA will be Phase 1 of a three-part project to prepare for the widening of Wadsworth Boulevard, with construction projected to begin in 2019. This work builds off of a Planning and Environmental Linkage (PEL) study for Wadsworth that was completed in 2015 with input from the local community. The major components of the proposed project are to reconstruct the street to a 6-lane section; provide better bicycle, pedestrian, and transit facilities; manage driveway access to the street; and provide enhanced amenity zones along the corridor, particularly in the City Center section between W. 38th and W. 44th Avenues.
During the early stages of the EA for the Wadsworth Widening project, the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) voiced concern over the number of signalized intersections described in the original 2015 Planning and Environmental Linkages (PEL) Study, which was intended to be the design basis for the EA.
This concern led the City to consider alternative design options for the corridor to better align the goals of the City with the needs of CDOT. Of the designs considered, a simple version of a Continuous Flow Intersection for both 38th and 44th Avenues seems to meet CDOT and the City’s objectives best by helping to reduce congestion while improving the corridor’s ability to serve drivers, bikes, pedestrians, and transit. CFIs are innovative intersection designs that are increasingly being used around the country. In Colorado they can be found in Durango, Loveland, and will soon be built in both Douglas and Arapahoe Counties. To see how a CFI would work at 38th and Wadsworth, please watch the video below.
Layout of the CFI designs being considered for intersections of Wadsworth and 38th & 44th Avenues. CFIs can help improve traffic flow and reduce congestion by 30-70%.