Rabbit Ears road work 95 percent completed

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— Drivers and passengers will have a much smoother ride while traveling on Rabbit Ears Pass this fall, once a repair project that has taken most of the summer is finished.
The nine-mile project, which began in mid-May, is almost 95 percent complete, according to Tony Connell of Connell Resources Inc.
Originally, the road work was to be finished by late July, but the Colorado Department of Transportation decided ti wanted frost heaves repaired as well, adding another month of construction.
Frost heaves are caused when moisture sinks deep into the road, Connell said. Once the moisture freezes, it expands and causes buckles in the road. CDOT identified the 10 worst frost heaves on Rabbit Ears Pass and Connell Resources installed pieces of foam board under the highway for insulation.
Connell says the project has left the road much smoother.
"The smoothness has probably improved 75 percent," Connell said.
Heavy traffic to and from Steamboat required the company to use more traffic control than it had originally anticipated.
"We had to have a little additional traffic control, but other than that we had no problems," Connell said.
The project is not only right on schedule, but it is right on budget as well, he said.
Connell was awarded the $1.9 million project contract earlier this year.
"We appreciate everybody's cooperation" said Connell. "I just hope people will continue to drive safe up there."

Joleen Fuller is an intern for the Steamboat Pilot/Steamboat Today newspapers.

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