CDOT says the 13-mile toll lane between Empire and Idaho Springs should open in mid-December, using the eastbound shoulder of the highway as an extra lane during peak travel times.
The cost to use the toll lane will range from a few dollars up to $40, depending on how much traffic is on the road, CDOT says. It’s guaranteeing speeds of about 40 mph in the lane, which should save up to a half- hour of travel time.
Colorado also plans to step up enforcement of traction laws for passenger vehicles during winter storms in the mountain stretches of the I-70 corridor.
The state transportation department hopes the heightened attention will lead to less traffic snarls caused by vehicles with bad tires. Violators could be fined $130, or $650 if they block the highway.
When a storm triggers the traction law, passenger vehicles must have snow tires -- tires with the mud/snow designation -- or a four-wheel drive. The tires must have a minimum one-eighth inch tread.
Last year the state launched an education campaign encouraging motorists to replace bald tires. CDOT says that campaign helped reduce weather-related crashes.