Highway 119 completely open in Boulder Canyon

From Nederland to Boulder

PRESS RELEASE – Gov. John Hickenlooper announced Monday that the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) has completely reopened Highway 119 through Boulder Canyon following flooding that took place in September. In coordination with officials from Boulder County, the Colorado National Guard, the Colorado State Patrol and contractor SEMA Construction, Inc., the highway has now been opened with one lane of traffic in each direction on a paved road.

“The opening of Highway 119 ahead of schedule is a victory for all of us after last month’s flooding,” said Gov. Hickenlooper. “We want to thank everyone involved in opening this critical roadway to provide communities access to the transportation they need for their everyday lives. Colorado is rising to meet this unprecedented challenge to rebuild our communities.”

Originally scheduled to be reopened in mid- to late-October, contractor and CDOT crews have been working 24 hours a day, seven days a week to reopen the highway as soon as was safely possible.

“We are so proud of the vigilance with which crews handled this project,” said CDOT Executive Director Don Hunt. “Many of our crew members have been personally affected by the flooding, and we appreciate the dedication they showed to their work on the highway. Their devotion allows residents and other motorists to begin restoring a sense of normalcy to their lives.”

Crews have been working on the project 24 hours a day, seven days a week since a contractor was brought on board Sept. 23, and CDOT maintenance crews had been working around the clock since the highway closed due to flooding on Sept. 12. Altogether, more than 400 tons of hot mix asphalt was laid on the highway to repave the surface, and more than 4,600 tons of rip-rap fill dirt and rock was used to restore the highway.

With the opening of Hwy 119, motorists traveling to and from Estes Park have a much shorter drive time, and those traveling to Boulder from Nederland can also take a shorter, more direct route.

Although the highway will be open to traffic, motorists are warned that some final guardrail, embankment and miscellaneous work will take place on the highway shoulders for the next week or so. Motorists are encouraged to still expect some short delays, and to drive Slow for the Cone Zone.

For additional information about current flooding closures, flood-related construction projects and flood information pertaining to state highways, please visit

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