E-470 is a well-run, 47-mile toll road, covering eight member jurisdictions, including Adams, Arapahoe, and Douglas counties, and the municipalities of Aurora, Brighton, Commerce City, Parker, and Thornton. It runs along the eastern perimeter of the Denver metropolitan area, from State Highway C-470 and I-25 in Douglas County, through Aurora and passing along the western edge of Denver International Airport – then turning back towards the west, ending at I-25 just south of 160th Ave.
Tim Stewart, executive director of the E-470 Highway Authority, shared the history and sustainable future of E-470 with the large group of transportation enthusiasts at the Aug. 2 meeting of The Chamber’s Transportation committee.
Since the first segment of the highway opened in 1991, much has changed – including advancing technology, expanded partnerships and collaborations, median remediation, widening, and a lot of residential and commercial development along the corridor.
However, Stewart maintains that the one thing that has never changed about the highway is that safety is – and always will be – a huge priority. Granted, E-470 saves time – 14.8 million hours of travel time per year, which translates to $26.1 million in annual travel time savings, but that well-known saying of “safety first” holds the highest value for Stewart.
The most recent project is an approximately $90 million widening of 8 miles of the highway near Southlands Mall between Parker Road and Quincy Avenue. The project began May 2016 and will be complete at the end of 2017, which Stewart fondly refers to as a ‘herculean’ task.
Yes, there is a toll to take the highway, but smart travelers can sign up for ExpressToll and pay the lowest toll rates on all Colorado tolling facilities – and the safety, convenience, connectivity, time savings, and peace of mind are well worth it.