Blog
July 2018

Congratulations to the City of Golden, Colorado, which received a Project of the Year Award from the American Public Works Association (APWA) for its Linking Lookout project. Otak worked as structural engineer-of-record to develop the design, construction phasing, and construction cost estimates for this $30 million project.

Linking Lookout is a beautiful and user-friendly path linking Golden and the communities at the base of Lookout Mountain, while helping bicyclists, pedestrians, and cars safely cross over US 6. The project is part of the City’s overall approach to transportation, designing highways that meet regional mobility needs and unite the community.

Otak worked with the City of Golden, Kraemer North America, the Colorado Department of Transportation, and Colorado School of Mines to design the two-span, 160-foot-long by 280-foot-wide structure, which serves as an urban park as well as a major multi-modal transportation conduit. When the design team learned that hundreds to thousands of bike riders crossed US 6 each day, the design team knew that no ordinary interchange would do. Because there would be no other chance in a hundred years to do it right, it was a “Designable Moment.”

The team took the opportunity to create an urban park setting, with up to 10 feet of fill and trees added on top of the bridge deck, along with picnic tables, park space, and a small amphitheater. In addition to reconnecting the community, providing recreational amenities, and enhancing pedestrian and bike safety, the environmentally friendly project also improves traffic flow and air quality and reduces noise.

The design not only improves service for drivers, bicyclists, and pedestrians, but it also improves connectivity from the residential areas on the west side of US 6 to the Colorado School of Mines campus east of US 6. It also increased safety for what used to be Golden’s most accident-prone intersection: 19th Street and US 6. Now US 6 is an underpass and vehicles, bicyclists, and pedestrians cross safely over the busy highway on their way between downtown Golden and other local destinations, including the Colorado School of Mines and Lookout Mountain.

Peter J. Loris served as the project manager for the LORIS and Associates team. Senior LORIS project manager Dan Beltzer, PE, and former LORIS bridge engineer Sarah Navarro, PE, provided the structural design. The project previously won the 2017 Innovative Transportation Solution of the Year award from the Women’s Transportation Seminar.

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