As thousands flock to the mountains Labor Day weekend, Colorado Department of Transportation officials are warning motorists of heavy traffic and delays.

Heavier traffic along Interstate 25 and westbound Interstate 70 is expected from midmorning to late afternoon on Friday, CDOT said. Congestion is also expected from 7 a.m. to midafternoon Saturday.

Drivers on eastbound I-70 in the Summit County and Denver area are most likely to see heavy traffic on Labor Day in the midmorning, the agency stated.

Last year, the Eisenhower–Edwin C. Johnson Memorial Tunnel saw more than 20,000 vehicles traveling west on Sunday, Sept. 2. The highest traffic CDOT recorded throughout the weekend occurred on Friday, Aug. 31, when over 34,000 were headed west through the tunnel.

2018 Labor Day CDOT numbers

Chart courtesy of the Colorado Department of Transportation.

The agency said Thursday that construction projects, with the exception of emergency work, will be suspended statewide at noon Friday to reduce traffic delays, the news release read. The projects will be resumed Tuesday.

The silver lining for motorists: even as traffic increases, gas prices are falling.

“With Labor Day around the corner, motorists will see the cheapest end to the summer since 2016, a great send-off to wrap up the summer driving season,” said Patrick DeHaan, head of petroleum analysis for GasBuddy.

As of Thursday, the average regular fuel price per gallon in Colorado Springs was $2.44 — a five month low for the city.

Multimedia Journalist

Liz is a multimedia journalist with a specific interest in space exploration and environment. She watches way too much Star Trek and is working toward her rescue scuba divers certification. Liz joined the Gazette staff in 2019.

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