Phase Two of the Ralston Road reconstruction project is slated to begin on April 26 and will last an estimated 24 months, effecting the section of Ralston Road between Yukon and Garrison Streets. One lane in each direction will remain open during construction.
The reconstruction project aims to expand the travel lanes of the east-west corridor of Ralston Road from nine feet to 11 feet in width. The center turning lane will be expanded to 12 feet wide, and an eight-foot-wide walkway will be added for pedestrians and cyclists. Traffic lights along the roadway will be updated and the city will carry out additional beautification measures.
The corridor carries more than 23,000 cars per day, with the Arvada’s comprehensive plan estimating that number will rise in coming years as the city’s population continues to grow.
Phase One of the project began in Feb. 2020 and included renovations to the section of Ralston Road between Upham and Yukon Streets. The first phase – paid for by grants from the state and the Denver Regional Council of Governments — is about 70% complete, according to Arvada’s Infrastructure Manager of Communications Rachael Kuriowa.
Phase Two of the project will be funded by money made available from the passage of ballot measure 3F, passed in 2018. The ballot measure allotted $15 million for the Ralston Road renovation.
“The intent of the project is to increase the safety and comfort of everyone that uses the roadway,” said Kuriowa. “On Ralston Road there were high incidents of side-swipe accidents, people were really uncomfortable walking in the corridor, so the intent is to reduce accident, help people feel more comfortable, and increase pedestrian and cyclist access for a major thoroughfare.”
Beginning April 26, the southern side of the intersection of Olde Wadsworth Bouldevard and Ralston Road will be closed, with the closure estimated to last for two weeks. The intersection will remain passable with one lane staying open on each side.
During Phase Two, RTD buses will continue their usual routes and local businesses will remain open and accessible to the public.
While the project has caused congestion on the thoroughfare, some local businesses are excited for what the project will bring down the line.
Trawesh Gyawali, a server at Yak and Yeti Restaurant and Brewpub located near Ralston Road and Yarrow Street, said the project hasn’t impacted business too severely.
“(The renovation) has slightly narrowed customers,” Gyawali said, “but it does not affect us in the number of people that come in too much. I believe and I hope that when it’s done it will make the road more accessible. I think it’s alright — it’s affecting us a little bit, but we’ll survive.”
A public forum regarding the renovation project and the commencement of Phase Two was held on April 15.