WCR 5 Improvements
As a reminder, this project started in the summer of 2021 with utility work in and around the roadway. The next six phases of work will ultimately increase safety for vehicles, pedestrians, and cyclists and will improve traffic flow through the area.
Included in the plans for the WCR 5 Improvement Project is to:
- Widen WCR 5 along the whole corridor
- Extend turn lanes where possible
- Add bike lanes along both sides of the roadway
- Extend sidewalks for added pedestrian options
- Add a traffic signal at WCR 5 and Flora View (north entrance to Soaring Heights)
This project is planned to help facilitate better traffic flow and create a safer pedestrian and bicyclist environment. The benefits to completing this project are many, but the Town does understand that the construction period for this project will create significant changes for parents, students, teachers, and community members who regularly commute through this area.
To mitigate the impacts as much as possible, the Town of Erie has been working with St. Vrain Valley School District, to work around major events such as graduation, and is working in collaboration with the Front Range Landfill to lessen large truck traffic through the area as much as possible during construction. The timeline for this project is unfortunately anticipated to last longer than the summer holidays and will either need to begin before the year ends or would extend into the beginning of the next school year. After discussing options with the impacted stakeholders, it was decided that beginning before the end of the 2021/2022 school, year was the best option. While the current schedule anticipated completing the work prior to the start of the 2022/2023 school year, there may be some schedule impacts due to weather, supply chain issues, or other unforeseen situations that adjust the overall timeline. If such impacts occur, the Town and the school district will communicate those changes to the public.
Any questions or concerns about the overall project plans can be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org. Any questions or concerns about the construction work itself can be directed to the contractor, Brandon Torrez at email@example.com or 720-327-1484.
Final Phase | Current Phase
On Wed., August 17, pending unforeseen issues or delays, the contractor will reconstruct the WCR 5 and WCR 10 intersection marking the beginning of the final phase of the WCR Improvements project.
Motorists can expect:
- A full opening of WCR 5 for both southbound and northbound traffic with striping by August 17.
- Intermittent closures of either eastbound or westbound WCR 10; detour as necessary.
- Construction is permitted between the hours of 7 a.m. and 7 p.m.
Pedestrians can expect:
- Sidewalks along the north side of Flora View Drive and the east side of WCR 5 will be complete by the start of school on Wed., August 17.
- Crossing guard volunteers (provided by the Erie Police) will be at WCR 5 & Erie Parkway and WCR 5 and Flora View (in addition to SVVSD crossing guards on school property) from August 17 - August 19. As always, School Resource Officers are on-site during drop off and pickup, as well as throughout the school day.
- Beginning August 22, The Town contracted with S.E.S. Security for crossing guard services on WCR 5 at Flora View until the signal installation; expected in winter.
Motorists, pedestrians, and bicyclists are urged to reduce speeds and pay close attention to detours and traffic control signs.
The contractor reports the bulk of the work is anticipated to conclude in early September. Afterwards, there may be needs for intermittent shoulder and lane closures for traffic signal installations, landscaping, etc.
Phasing of Work
To complete the work in an expedited and safest way possible, the roadway will be full closed in both directions during each phase of work. This will require specific detours to access either Soaring Heights Elementary or Erie High School. If the contractors attempted to complete the work with single land closures, flaggers, or some other way of maintaining two-way traffic, the project would exponentially increase in length and introduce other possible safety concerns.
The Town of Erie will be approving each phase of the work as it is about to begin. This allows to flexibility and implementing best practices and addressing any lessons learned between phases. There are six planned phases for this project, all of which have draft timelines and plans that will be adjusted and approved as the project progresses.
Phase 5 | Previous Phase
- Where: Full closure of WCR 5 from Erie Parkway heading north to just south of Colliers Parkway.
- Planned timeline: July 19 - Aug. 16
- Work Planned: Removal of existing asphalt, cut/fill grading per project plans, placement of base course, concrete curb and gutter, related utility piping for services, asphalt paving, striping, and signage up.
- Suggested detours: All traffic attempting to access Soaring Heights or EHS will need to access the entrances from the west along Colliers Parkway or Flora View Drive, or from the north down WCR 5.
Motorists, pedestrians, and bicyclists are urged to pay close attention to detours and traffic control signs. Please reduce speeds and, if possible, avoid the construction area altogether.
- Why don’t you complete the work while leaving a single lane open in both directions?
We considered this option as a way to maintain traffic flow through WCR 5 during the work. After much discussion with the contractor, EPD, and the school districts we found that this option was not the best choice for two main reasons:
- Safety: The major equipment needed for this construction, paired with high traffic during school hours, and the number of pedestrians (construction workers and students/parents/teachers) created a hazardous situation. Fully closing the road to all traffic in phases actually creates a much safer construction zone, limiting the number of interactions between the general public and construction equipment/work.
- Timing: If we did the project while leaving open lanes, it would essentially extend the timeline for the project by another three to four months. Contending with commuting hours and less overall workspace would slow the progress down enough to substantially lengthen the time the road is under construction.
- Why didn’t you wait to start this project until the summer, after school?
This project timeline is already condensed at tightly as it could feasibly be while still giving allowances for possible weather or supply delays. There is logistically no way the project could be completed during the summer break.
This means our project team, along with SVVSD, and EPD discussed the best possible timing to either coincide with the end of a school year, or the beginning of the next. Based on the most efficient phasing of the project, it made the most sense and caused the least negative impacts to begin the project begore the end of the school year.
- Who can I contact if I have a question or concern with this project?
There are two main contacts to consider based on your specific issue:
- If you have questions about the elements of the planned project (bicycle lanes, sidewalks, streetlight, etc.) please contact Town staff at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- If you have questions or concerns about the work happening on the ground (detour signs, noise, construction equipment, etc.) please contact the contractor, John Murnan, at email@example.com or 720-490-7417.