ESTES PARK, Colo. (CBS4)– The Colorado Department of Transportation will reopen U.S. Highway 34 in the Big Thompson Canyon for good after nearly two years of repairs.
Repair work from the September 2013 flood will be completed next week, earlier than the initial estimate of completion in December of this year.
After nearly two years, drivers have not been able to use the highway to visit Estes Park or Rocky Mountain National Park.
Crews have been working the stretch of highway between Loveland and Estes Park since October 2016 to repair damage from the 2013 floods while also working to make the highway more flood resistant.
CDOT crews have blasted and hauled rock in the Big Thompson Canyon totaling an amount that would fit in nearly 20,000 concrete mixer trucks.
Roads and bridges were heavily damaged during the 2013 floods and decades before that in the 1976 floods.
CDOT studied the hydraulic flow of the river, considering safety improvements and options to prevent and protect against future floods.