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US 85 Corridor Improvements

Project Description

Updated Dec. 2019 

The goal of the Douglas County US 85 Corridor Study, (Study completed in Dec. 2016), and known formally as a Planning and Environmental Linkage (PEL) Study, is to update previous transportation recommendations for the segment of US 85 between State Highway 67 in Sedalia to 1/2 mile north of C-470 and County Line Road. The study identified long term transportation corridor needs for 2040 and beyond – many of these proposed improvements are planned to be implemented much sooner. The project team identified a “Purpose and Need” that focused on addressing traffic congestion concerns. This study identified a corridor vision and implementation plan to advance the recommended improvements in the future when needed.

Additionally, with the approval of Record of Decision Re-Evaluation (dated July 2017), the environmental clearances are now in place to advance the widening and reconstruction of the segment of US 85 between Highlands Ranch Parkway and C-470 Interchange. The next critical steps in 2020 are to finalize the construction documents (plans & specifications), complete right-of-way (ROW) acquisitions (from only two remaining parcels) and relocate hundreds of utilities – which are needed in order to accommodate the proposed improvements. Construction anticipated dates are listed below by project segment:

  • US 85 widening Highlands Ranch Parkway to Dad Clark Gulch (1,200 ft north of County Line Rd), combined with reconstructing the US 8 / C-470 interchange and widening US 85 to three thru lanes plus auxiliary lanes in each direction between Highlands Ranch Parkway to Dad Clark Gulch, adding bicycle and pedestrian improvements. This $98 Million project will provide additional capacity and a safer more reliable regional transportation network. In 2019, $5 Million in additional right-of-way was acquired (as of Dec. 2019, over 70 parcels were acquired– only two parcels remaining), major utility relocations with Excel Energy were initiated and after 15 months of no action, we have re-engaged Century Link on advancing the design of their infrastructure relocation. Additionally, staff is working with the BNSF and Union Pacific Railroads to gain their approval of the proposed widening within their property; and work continues with CDOT to gain their approval and anticipate bidding this project in second quarter of 2020, with anticipated completion date fall 2022.
  • US 85 widening from two to four lanes between Louviers to Sedalia. This project requires full reconstruction of US 85 and CDOT anticipates bidding this $44 Million project in Jan. 2020 and beginning construction in April 2020. Douglas County has been involved in the design and right-of-way phases and is contributing a total of $8 million to advance this project.
  • US 85 widening from two to four lanes between SH 67 (Sedalia) to Happy Canyon Road and Daniels Park Road Intersection improvements. The County is partnering with CDOT to improve this segment of US 85 and install a traffic signal at Daniels Park Road Intersection. In 2019, CDOT and the county staff met several times with IREA regarding relocating their infrastructure to accommodate the proposed improvements. Additionally, the County met key property owners as part of the right-of-way (ROW) acquisition process, and in Aug. 2019 the County was selected by DRCOG to obtain $855,000 in federal funds through DRCOG for ROW or design.
  • US 85 / Titan Interchange Improvements.  Douglas County is working with CDOT to complete the final design and obtain necessary permits in order to widen the northbound on-ramp and restripe Titan over US 85 in order to improve safety and traffic operations. Anticipate construct improvements to be completed in spring 2020.


View the project map for detailed schedule information.



Project Manager

Art Griffith
[email protected]