IDAHO SPRINGS, Colo. (CBS4) – The eastbound twin tunnels is now open with three lanes in an effort to help traffic move smoother.
The project started in April when the Colorado Department of Transportation started routing drivers onto a temporary route so they could re-do the tunnel and add a third lane.
The tunnel was usually crowded with traffic especially on Sundays doing both the winter and summer.
“This tunnel is much higher, much wider, and you’re not going to get that black hole effect that was slowing people with that psychological effect for many years,” said Region One Transportation Director Tony DeVito.
The tunnel widening is only one part of a larger project.
In 2014 the Interstate 70 peak period shoulder lane project will get started.
It will be adding a lane for eastbound travel from the empire junction where U.S. 40 splits off toward Winter Park and go all the way through Idaho Springs to the tunnels.
When it’s done the shoulder lanes can be taken at any time, but during peak travel times it will be a toll lane.
It opens in 2015.