U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx announced that the U.S. Department of Transportation is immediately making available an additional $30 million in emergency relief funds to help Colorado cover the costs of repairing roads and bridges damaged by recent flooding. The $30 million in emergency relief funds provided to Colorado today follows $5 million from the Department last week, bringing the total to $35 million.
“While Colorado begins the difficult work recovering from these devastating floods, we will do everything we can to help restore vital transportation links,” says Secretary Foxx. “We will continue to support the people of Colorado as they confront major disruptions and help them get their roads, bridges and everyday routines back to normal as soon as possible.”
Major flooding across Colorado caused by heavy rain washed out or closed numerous highways and bridges in Boulder, Larimer, Weld, Denver, Gilpin, Clear Creek and Jefferson Counties in eastern Colorado. Highways 14, 34 and 36 were hit particularly hard, with roadway damage exceeding 20 miles in each case. The preliminary damage cost estimate statewide is $40 million for roads and $112 million for bridges.
Of the funding provided, $25 million will immediately support current efforts to re-open closed roads, provide detours and protect damaged structures, and $5 million will go toward road and bridge repairs on federally-owned lands, including the Rocky Mountain National Park and the Rocky Mountain Arsenal Wildlife Refuge.
“We will work with Colorado to repair and restore all the roads and bridges that were damaged or destroyed,” said Federal Highway Administrator Victor Mendez. “Our commitment to the citizens of Colorado during this disaster is steadfast.”
Funds from the Federal Highway Administration's (FHWA) Emergency Relief Program will reimburse the Colorado Department of Transportation for emergency work done in the immediate aftermath of the flooding. FHWA will provide additional funds in the future as permanent repairs are identified and cost estimates are completed. FHWA's emergency relief program provides funds for the repair or reconstruction of federal-aid roads and bridges damaged by natural disasters or catastrophic events.