Traffic Advisory: Castle Creek Bridge Inspection and Detour
Traffic adjustments will occur November 28 to December 1
Aspen, CO - To address community inquiries about the feasibility and cost of either replacing or rehabilitating the Castle Creek Bridge in its current location, a comprehensive inspection to assess its current condition has been scheduled. Temporary traffic adjustments will be in place during the day from November 28 to December 1, 2023, potentially adding additional travel times.
In order to minimize impact on the traveling public, inspection work will occur between 8:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. During this period, outbound traffic will be rerouted on Power Plant Road.
The inspection entails a hands-on assessment of the 62-year-old bridge's physical condition, requiring the staging of large equipment in the southern bridge lane and on the sidewalk to allow engineers access to the underside of the structure.
“This work is timed during daytime hours to have the least impact on the traveling public,” Transportation and Parking Director Pete Rice said. “We would ask people who are able to travel using alternative modes – bus and carpool – to do that. This will help reduce traffic during these necessary detours.”
During the detour, traffic will be managed by flaggers to accommodate outbound buses on the Castle Creek Bridge. Pedestrians will be directed across traffic at the east and west ends of the bridge detour to utilize the sidewalk on the north side, which will remain open. The south side sidewalk across the bridge will be temporarily closed to pedestrians. The bike path under the bridge will remain accessible.
In the event of inclement weather, supplemental night-work inspection work may be needed from 7:30 p.m. to 2:30 a.m. on one or more days. If night work is needed, traffic will follow the designated daytime detour.
This inspection follows a 70-day community awareness campaign designed to share information and increase understanding of the history of the Entrance to Aspen. Earlier this year, Aspen City Council approved a contract with Jacobs Engineering Group to address community inquiries about the feasibility and cost of either replacing or rehabilitating the existing bridge in its current location. The contract also seeks to explore actions required for investigating a bridge replacement alternative that was not fully examined during the federal approval process for the currently approved replacement alignment.
The term "Preferred Alternative" refers to the option chosen through a federal evaluation process that evaluated 43 alternatives for highway and intersection improvements. The 1998 federal approval, known as the Record of Decision, includes completed project elements such as the Maroon Creek Bridge, roundabout, Owl Creek Road realignment, signals on Highway 82 at Buttermilk, and congestion management programs. One outstanding element yet to be completed is the bridge replacement on a new alignment across Castle Creek.
In accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act, an Environmental Impact Statement is required if a proposed major federal action is deemed to have a significant impact on the quality of the human environment.
The Castle Creek Bridge underwent evaluation in the fall of 2022 for the Colorado Department of Transportation and received a sufficiency rating of 50.3 out of 100. Ratings below 50 are considered poor.
The City of Aspen appreciates the community's understanding and cooperation during this essential inspection period. Safety and the long-term well-being of infrastructure remain our top priorities.
For more information, please contact:
Ashlyn Gerbaz, Communications Coordinator