July 26, 2018

Traffic Metering on I-70

A surprise to many, July is the busiest travel month through the Eisenhower Tunnel. That’s why regulating traffic at the tunnel is vital, and metering is a crucial tool to manage heavy traffic. 

While drivers may be stopped due to I-70 metering, the overall delay is fewer than five minutes, as you’ll quickly catch up with the eastbound cars ahead of you. Safety Metering ensures that traffic doesn’t become gridlocked in the tunnel.  It is critical to the safety of the traveling public that emergency vehicles are able to pass through the tunnel if needed. When traveling through the corridor this summer be aware of the two types of metering:

1.            Continuous-Flow Safety Metering:  Occurs on the approach to the Eisenhower Tunnel. An alternating red and green stoplight cycles every four to eight seconds to keep traffic moving consistently through the tunnel. As a result, traffic on the tunnel’s east side gradually dissipates.

2.            On-Ramp Safety Metering: Occurs at eastbound on-ramps at Copper Mountain, Frisco, Silverthorne, Loveland, Empire and Idaho Springs. This type of metering is more familiar, occurring on highway and Interstate on-ramps throughout Denver.

Visit GoI70.com/travel for a weekly I-70 travel forecast, check CoTrip.org or call 511 from anywhere in Colorado for road conditions throughout the state.

This Weekend’s Travel Forecast

This weekend historically sees high traffic volumes on I-70, so plan accordingly if you want to avoid traffic.

Friday WB – Traffic will likely develop around 10:00 a.m. and last as late as 8:00 p.m.  The worst of the traffic is likely to occur between 2:00-7:00 p.m. with up to 30 minutes delay. 

Saturday WB – There has been heavy Saturday westbound traffic on this day the last few years.  Expect congestion to develop around 9:00 a.m. and clear out around 3:30 p.m.  Last year traffic peaked at 11:00 a.m. with 30 minutes additional travel time from C470 to Frisco.

Saturday EB – No significant delays are anticipated, but traffic will be thick from about 1:00-5:00 p.m.

Sunday EB – Expect traffic between 10:30 a.m. and 8:00 p.m., with the heaviest traffic occurring mid-afternoon.  In recent years the delays resulted in an extra 45 minutes of travel time from Silverthorne to C470. The I-70 Mountain Express Lane will help keep traffic moving through Clear Creek County, but be prepared for possible metering at the Eisenhower Tunnel.   

Need a reason to stay late?  Check out some of the local deals on dining, shopping and Sunday night lodging at GoI70.com/deals

Have a great weekend!

*The GoI70.com Travel Forecast is based on historical data, along with an estimation of how weather, construction, public events and other factors might impact travel.