I-70 Aesthetic Guidelines

 I-70 Mountain Corridor Aesthetic Guidance and Context Sensitive Solutions

Golden to Glenwood Springs, Colorado

Client: Colorado Department of Transportation

I-70 Mountain Corridor Aesthetic Guidance: THK defined the design vocabulary for all improvements along the I-70 Mountain Corridor in the Aesthetic Guidance. The document defines a vision for the corridor as a whole and creates a tool box of design solutions for use in specific areas to achieve the overall vision. 

The aesthetic guidelines address four Design Segments along the corridor including the Front Range Foothills, Mountain Mineral Belt, Crest of the Rockies and Western Slope Canyons and Valleys.  Because of this, an extensive public involvement process was used and unique graphics were created to aid in public understanding.

In 2015, the Guidelines were updated to reflect lessons learned after utilizing the document on several projects. 

The I-70 Mountain Corridor Aesthetic Guidance is being successfully used on Twin Tunnels Expansion and Old Game Check Station Trailhead and Peak Period Shoulder Lane Expansion.

Additional information including the final documents can be found on CDOTs website at:


I-70 Mountain Corridor Context Sensitive Solutions (CSS):  THK also assisted in defining the Context Sensitive Solutions (CSS), adopted by CDOT in 2004, to assist designers and CDOT to preserve, protect and enhance the I-70 Mountain Corridor for all future planning, designing and construction in the corridor. 

An extensive public involvement process including input from residents, businesses, stakeholders, municipal and county staff, CDOT, and State and Federal agencies was used and unique graphics were created so the public could understand a very complex visual environment.  The initial effort emphasized the Visual Context of the corridor. A Functional Context plan was then developed to help the public understand how I-70 functions with respect to land use patterns, cultural resources and recreational uses.

In 2014, THK assisted Clear Creek County (CCC) to define the CSS process for the I-70 Mountain Corridor within the CCC by facilitating the Clear Creek County Vision for the I-70 Mountain Corridor Workshop.

Additional information including fact sheets, lessons learned, decision making guidance, plans, maps and stakeholder input can be found on CDOTs website at: