Coloradans weigh in on infrastructure bill still in the works in Congress

The bipartisan plan could give billions to Colorado
Coloradans weigh in on infrastructure bill
Posted at 5:36 PM, Sep 30, 2021
and last updated 2021-09-30 22:20:35-04

DENVER — As of early Thursday evening, the future of Biden's bipartisan infrastructure bill remained uncertain as Coloradans remained hopeful for future investments to improve their commute.

"Getting up on I-270, it's kind of a nightmare," Georgia Iandoli said.

Iandoli has worked as a professional trucker for the past 32 years and said she's watched the quality of Colorado's highways and interstates decline.

"It can cause accidents because people will swerve to miss the potholes and stuff like that," she said.

"The potholes, if you hit it the wrong way, you're going to go in and not come out," said another driver, Jennifer Villaneuva, of her morning community along I-270.

The Colorado Department of Transportation has a comprehensive list of maintenance needs across the state. According to the latest data, CDOT typically uses about 48% of its revenues on maintenance repairs.

President Joe Biden's infrastructure plan presents an opportunity for the state to receive new federal dollars for ongoing repairs or repairs that have yet to begin.

According to the latest estimates from the White House, Colorado could expect to receive $3.7 billion for highways and $225 million for bridge replacement and repairs over a five-year period under the plan.

Conor Cahill, a spokesperson for Gov. Jared Polis' office, provided the following statement on the impact the money would have for Colorado:

"The bipartisan federal infrastructure bill would build upon the success of Colorado’s own bipartisan transportation Governor Polis signed this summer and have a positive impact on Colorado’s economy, reduce traffic, boost Front Range Rail, improve air quality and enhance our way of life. We could make the full fix to the critical Floyd Hill spot on I-70 between Denver and the Front Range and our mountain recreation areas. We could address safety issues, reduce traffic and stand up a specialized transit service for the mountains - and do it all at once."

Denver7 traffic anchor Jayson Luber shared some of the frustrations he hears from drivers.

"Most people complain about C-470... about central Denver, and the area around Speer Boulevard right into the central part of the city. I hear a lot about I-270 around Vazquez — it is really awful in that area," Luber said.

According to CDOT estimates, overall improvements to both I-270 and Vazquez Boulevard could cost around $620 million.

Luber emphasized that there are huge price tags across the state that could benefit from federal support.

"CDOT really needs more money coming into the state." he said.