February 4, 2023
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Instead of demolishing and hauling away an 8.5-million-pound boulder that contributed to the destruction of a section of Colorado Highway 145 between Cortez and Telluride on May 26, the Colorado Department of Transportation is instead going to re-route the roadway around it – and save $200,000 in the process, according to news reports.

[Above photo via the Colorado DOT.]

“We will not be destroying this 8.5-million-pound boulder – which is the size of a house,” noted Colorado Gov. Jared Polis (D) in a statement via Twitter. “Instead, we’re going to make a new state landmark called ‘Memorial Rock’ and save taxpayers money.”

He added that while it would cost $1.5 million to repair the road and blast apart that massive rock, it will cost less – some $1.3 million – to reroute Colorado Highway 145 around it.

Last week, the Colorado DOT used explosives to clear other boulders and debris that blocked that highway following a rockslide.

editor@aashto.org

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