Beginning Monday, CO71 near Rocky Ford will be closed until late October.

The road closure will be between mile markers 18.75 and 19.5. Motorists will be directed to a detour route that utilizes a combination of highways, including US 50, CO 207 and CO 96.  

Access to local businesses on CO 71 will be maintained.

Normal travel time between Rocky Ford and Ordway, a distance of 12.9 miles, is about 15 minutes, according to Google maps. With the closure of CO 71, distance will increase to 21.3 miles and travel time is estimated at 26 minutes.

The closure is needed for the bridge replacement over the Arkansas River between Rocky Ford and Ordway.

“This project is part of CDOT’s ongoing efforts to improve bridge safety throughout the state,” says Dan Dahlke, CDOT Resident Engineer.

The bridge being replaced was erected in 1934, and is considered structurally weak.

Work will include installation of construction access, grading, removal of existing structure, installation of new structure, earthwork, construction signing, striping and guardrail installation.

The new bridge, funded with state of Colorado FASTER Bridge Funding, will have 12-foot lanes and 8-foot shoulders.

If you have questions or comments about the CO71 Bridge Replacement Over Arkansas River project, email the Public Information team at CO71bridge@PublicInfoTeam.com or call the project hotline at 719-299-2007.

Information about the project can also be found at www.codot.gov/projects/co71-arkansas-river-bridge-replacement/. Updates will also be available via Twitter @coloradodot and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/coloradodot.