Author: Melinda LaJudice

UPDATE CO119 Reopened

BOULDER —  Colorado Highway 119 in Boulder Canyon was opened with one lane of alternating traffic around 4 a.m. this morning after geotech experts determined the slope was stable and additional blasting was not needed on part of the rockface.

This assessment allowed crews to move safely and clear the one lane area. Included in that clearing was the need to blast several large boulders, estimated to be the size of a bus, into smaller pieces that could be hauled away. That additional blasting took place before dark which then gave time for crews to haul away and clear the one lane.


The road will close again at 10 a.m. — which is the normal closure time — to allow crews to continue the cleanup and it will reopen with at least one lane again at 2 p.m.


“We thank everyone for their continued patience as we work through a technically complex effort,”said Colorado Department of Transportation Executive Director Shoshana Lew. “This work is important for keeping people safe when driving in mountain areas, but it’s difficult work and we know that it causes inconvenience for the traveling public during construction.”


After the rockfall from blasting on Wednesday sent 8,000 cubic yards of rock to the road, it was initially determined that another area of rock would need to be blasted which is why the Colorado Department of Transportation said the road would be closed for two to three days.


After given the all-clear by the experts, crews worked through the night to clear about 4,000 cubic yards of rock to make room for the one lane.


No closures are expected for Friday or over the weekend. Regular blasting closure will start at 10 a.m. Monday.

Boulder Canyon Closed At Least 24 Hours


BOULDER — Colorado Highway 119 in Boulder Canyon will be closed indefinitely – at least for 24 hours –  following a massive rockfall during regular blasting for the project.

Usually a blast brings down about 400 cubic yards each time. Today’s blast sent approximately 8,000 cubic yards of rock down the side of the mountain and on to the roadway. A cubic yard is about the size of a normal washing machine.

Some of the rock is too large to be moved and additional blasts will be needed to break it up before it can be taken away.  There were no injuries as the area was clear due to regular safety protocols during blasting.

In addition to this rockfall, CDOT geotech officials have found another area of rock that was loosened in this blast that will need to be blasted out to ensure the roadway is safe for regular traffic. Crews will be working overnight through this process to clear the road as soon as possible.

Boulder Valley School District has plans in place to get school buses to the affected residences. There are local detours available and Colorado Highway 72 is the main way for people to bypass this area. RTD has also been contacted and will determine bus routes accordingly.

The blasting that was happening was NOT to mitigate rockfall. This was part of the CO 119 flood construction project. We are blasting into the mountain to move more of the road on to bedrock so it will survive during the next major flood.



Hydrant Flushing

Hydrant Flushing In Downtown

9/11/2019 – 9/13/2019

The Utilities Staff will be flushing hydrants in the Downtown neighborhood this week and next.  We flush hydrants annually to help maintain the best water quality possible.

During this time, residents may notice a slight decrease in water pressure or discoloration of water.  Water discoloration results from temporary disturbances of the normal water flow within our piping network. These short-term changes in flow can stir up naturally occurring minerals and sediment that settle within the water mains. The objective of the water main/hydrant flushing program is to remove these accumulated sediments from our pipes by flushing the water out of the fire hydrants.

If water discoloration does occur, customers should try to refrain from using hot water and run their cold-water faucets ONLY until the water appears clear.

If you should have any questions or concerns during this time, please contact the Utilities Department at


Thank you for your cooperation during this important water quality process.

CO119 Traffic Update

Update from CDOT

Due to a natural rock slide following today’s blast, CO 119 will remain closed through the evening. Crews are currently working to clear the highway for safe travel. Please plan to use alternate routes until otherwise notified. 

More information will be provided once it becomes available.

Free Disaster Preparation Training

Unlock your capacity for resilience!

Learn how to be ready for disasters and crisis with just a few minutes of planning each day. Join us for the Better Together classes offered by Boulder County. You will build a personalized plan for disaster resilience and leave with a workbook of preparedness materials and resources.

It’s hard to make the time to think about disasters and plan for them, so come spend the evening in a fun, supportive environment that will set the foundation for dealing with day-to-day disaster preparedness (job loss, loss of family members, economic shocks, etc.) as well as recovery from fires, floods, and other natural hazards.

The classes will take place in Lafayette in September and in the City of Boulder in October. We recommend that you take the classes in a series since the materials build on one another, but you can also sign up for them individually as it works for your schedule. The classes are free and open to the public, but registration is required and space is limited, so sign up today!

September Dates:

– Sept. 11, 6-8:30 p.m.

– Sept. 18, 6-8:30 p.m.

– Sept. 25, 6-8:30 p.m.

October Dates:

– Oct. 14, 6-8:30 p.m.

– Oct. 21, 6-8:30 p.m.

– Oct. 28, 6-8:30 p.m.

To register for these classes visit For more information, contact Katie Arrington at or 303-441-1609.

Fire Restrictions on the Arapaho and Roosevelt National Forests

Fire Restrictions on the Arapaho and Roosevelt National Forests

(Aug.29, 2019) – Stage 1 Fire and Shooting Restrictions are in effect on the Arapaho and Roosevelt National Forests in Boulder, Gilpin, Clear Creek and Park counties. The Forest Service works closely with county sheriffs to monitor conditions and evaluate the need for restrictions.

Stage 1 fire restrictions limit the type of fire and activities that are allowed on the national forest. Within the fire restriction area forest visitors may not:

  • Build or maintain a fire or use charcoal, coal, or wood stoves, except in permanent fire pits or fire grates within a developed recreation site (e.g., campgrounds where fees are charged).
  • Smoke, except in an enclosed vehicle or building, a developed recreation site, or while in an area at least three feet in diameter cleared of all flammable materials.
  • Use any internal or external combustion engine (including chainsaws) without a spark arresting device properly working and a chemical pressurized fire extinguisher and a round point shovel.
  • Weld or operate acetylene or other torch with open flame except in cleared areas of at least 10 feet in diameter and in possession of a chemical pressurized fire extinguisher.
  • Use explosives, including fireworks.
  • Discharge of a firearm unless in possession of a valid Colorado hunting license and lawfully involved in hunting and harvesting game.

Violation of Stage 1 fire restrictions could result in a maximum fine of $5,000 for an individual or $10,000 for an organization, or imprisonment for more than six months, or both. If responsible for causing a wildfire, one could be held accountable for suppression costs of that fire.

To view the fire restriction orders and maps, go to They will be listed in the “Alerts and Notices” box on the right. Please note that many counties are also under fire restrictions; information is available at

Stage One Fire Restrictions

Boulder and Gilpin County enacts Level 1 Fire Restrictions

Forecast for hot temperatures and dry conditions has increased fire danger

08/28/19 – Boulder County enacting Level 1 Fire Restrictions

Forecast for hot temperatures and dry conditions has increased fire danger

Photo of fire ban sign in Boulder County

When a fire ban is enacted, signs like this one are posted around the county.

Information on Fire Restrictions

Fire restrictions can be enacted either by the Sheriff or the Board of County Commissioners when certain outdoor conditions are met.

During any of the following weather events, open burning is not allowed in unincorporated Boulder County from time of issuance until midnight in which the event expires: Red Flag Warning, High Wind Warning, High Wind Watch and Fire Danger Warning. Check the local forecast for up to date information.

It is CRITICAL that visitors and residents alike do everything possible to prevent fires of all kinds. Please do what you can to protect our beautiful lands, homes and wildlife areas from the devastating effects of wildfires.