FORT CARSON, Colo. — As the construction on I-25 continues, traffic is getting backed up at Gate 20. What can be done to relieve this problem? Try using Gate 19.
Gate 19 has had very little use because Charter Oak Ranch Road, that leads to Gate 19, was in very poor condition. That led most personnel entering Fort Carson to access the south part of the post using Gate 20. This has led to large backups at Gate 20 which regularly have extended out to the I-25 off-ramps, causing raised safety concerns.
Charter Oak Ranch Road was deemed important to national defense by the Department of the Army. This led to the Colorado Department of Transportation to begin construction on the road between Santa Fe Avenue and Fort Carson Gate 19.
The road has been rebuilt and widened from the intersection at Santa Fe Avenue out to Gate 19. A roundabout replaced the four-way stop sign intersection at Santa Fe Avenue. On the Fort Carson side of Gate 19, an Essayons Road paving project was completed in December 2021.
This offers an alternative of entering Fort Carson through Gate 19 instead of Gate 20 for those who need to go out toward Butts Army Heliport and other units and facilities near it.
“Traffic that now enters post at Gate 20 and then heads south to the heliport area can now enter post through Gate 19 which is closer to the heliport,” said Mark Hunsicker, Engineering Division chief, Directorate of Public Works. “This will not only reduce congestion and delays at Gate 20, but also relieve some of the burden on the intra-post road network heading to the heliport.”
To access Gate 19, exit I-25 at mile marker 128 and proceed west on Santa Fe Avenue. Once at the traffic circle take the last exit out of the circle and drive up the hill. Gate 19 is right at the top of the hill.
The total time from I-25 to Gate 19 is no more than five minutes depending on traffic. From Gate 19 to the heliport is no more than 10 minutes depending on traffic. If you are coming from the North Gate 19 is 10 minutes South of Gate 20.
The rebuilding of Charter Oak Ranch Road and the paving of Essayons Road was intended to improve traffic flow through gates 19 and 20 and improve safety along the I-25 corridor as well as improve travel time to the heliport area for Fort Carson personnel coming from Fountain or Pueblo.