Cycling enthusiasts can rejoice on Thursday, August 10, as pro bicycle racing returns to Colorado Springs, Breckenridge and Denver in the form of the Colorado Classic. After the loss of the USA Pro Challenge in 2016, many people assumed it would be a few years before the city would see its challenging hills and curved graced with today’s toughest cycling competitors. However, only a year has passed and the streets of Colorado Springs will soon be lined with the best of the best in bicycle racing.
Such an epic event can’t be help without a bit of disruption, so we’re sharing tips to make it easier—whether you’re a fan or just a citizen trying to navigate road closures.
Colorado Classic Traffic Delays and Road Closures
The route for the Colorado Classic Colorado Springs leg will close multiple roads both for the race and for activities related to the race. You can find a complete list of the closures here, but here are a few of the main areas you’ll want to avoid if you’re out and about:
- Downtown Colorado Springs — If you can avoid driving near this area, do it. Many areas will not be allowing any vehicle traffic and even pedestrian traffic will be limited. Closures begin at 9 a.m. and end at 5 p.m. If you work in the downtown area, you may want to get to work pretty early and expect to leave later than usual.
- I-25 — Bijou off ramps will be closed on both sides. Colorado Ave. will also be closed, so access to it from I-25 isn’t looking good. CDOT recommends using Hwy. 24 to go south of Colorado Ave. on the west side and using Uintah to go north of Colorado Ave. on the west side.
- Garden of the Gods — The park will be closed from 11 p.m. August 9 through 5 p.m. on August 10.
- Colorado Ave. — Closed from Nevada Ave. all the way to 30th St. Also of note, you will not be able to cross the race route at 30th, hence the note above to use I-25.
- Multiple neighborhoods — If you live in areas such as Pleasant Valley or Kissing Camels, check the website for details on accessing your neighborhood. In some cases, police escorts are required. In others, your usual route may be closed.
The Colorado Classic is being held on a weekday in Colorado Springs, so many people will be going about their regular work schedule. If you are one of those people and you anywhere between downtown and Manitou Springs, plan accordingly. Leave earlier, carpool, review your route and expect delays.
Where to Watch the Colorado Classic:
If you’re lucky enough to have time off to catch some of the race, here are the best places to watch!
- Downtown Colorado Springs: Not only can you be a spectator, streets like Tejon will be closed and offer vendors, live music, bike-themed events, access to great restaurants and even a little local shopping.
- Old Colorado City: Like downtown, Old Colorado City will have special events all day to celebrate the Colorado Classic and access to local restaurants and shops.
- Garden of the Gods: Catch the race from America’s favorite park surrounded by beautiful scenery and good company.
Other Cool Colorado Classic Activities:
In addition to watching the race, check out these cool activities for an all-day experience:
- Stage 1 Festival — Live music, awards, vendors, beer garden and vendors all day long.
- Colorado Springs Community Mile (noon) — Run a quick and easy race right in front of the same spectators who are there for the Colorado Classic (all 10,000 of them). It’s an affordable $15 for adults, $10 for middle school or $100 for a team of 20.
- Kid’s Race — A free 300-meter race up Tejon for kids 12 and under (around 2:25 p.m.).
Don’t Forget the Post-race Party!
After the race, head to downtown Colorado Springs to enjoy an awesome post-race party right on Tejon St. You’ll find live music and a thirst-quenching beer garden in the street between Blondie’s and Cowboy’s. The party is free and runs from 7-10:30 p.m.
The ability to host Stage 1 of the Colorado Classic is a pretty big deal for Colorado Springs. Head out to one of the viewing locations and support pro-cyclists as they race through the west side — just be sure to plan ahead.
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