|Maintained by E-470 Public Highway Authority|
|Length:||46.950 mi (75.559 km)|
|Existed:||1991 – present|
|South end:||I‑25 / US 87 / SH 470 in Lone Tree|
|US 85 in Brighton|
|North end:||I‑25 / US 87 / Northwest Parkway in Thornton|
E-470 is a 47-mile-long (76 km) controlled-access toll road traversing the eastern portion of the Denver-Aurora Metropolitan Area in the US state of Colorado. The toll road is not a state highway, but is instead owned and maintained by the E-470 Public Highway Authority, which is controlled by a governing board of eight elected officials of local governments. Construction and operation involves no state or federal funding or taxes. As of 2013, 85% of its revenues were derived from tolls.
The tollway begins at the I-25 / SH 470 interchange in Lone Tree and runs east and north through Aurora, intersecting with I-70. The highway continues north, passing west of Denver International Airport to connect with I-76 in Brighton and Commerce City before curving west and ending at an interchange with I-25 and the Northwest Parkway in Thornton.
The 470 beltway
E-470 is the eastern portion of what was originally conceived as I-470, an outer beltway for metropolitan Denver. The quasi-government entity that manages the highway, the E-470 Public Highway Authority, consists of eight member jurisdictions: Adams, Arapahoe, and Douglas counties and the cities of Aurora, Brighton, Commerce City, Thornton, and the town of Parker. In addition to all of these jurisdictions, E-470 also passes through the City and County of Denver near Denver International Airport. Affiliate, non-voting members of the Authority, which the highway does not directly serve, are the cities of Arvada and Greeley, and Weld County and the City and County of Broomfield. Ex-officio members are the Colorado Department of Transportation, the Denver Regional Council of Governments and the Regional Transportation District. The authority is headquartered in Aurora.
The toll rate on E-470, roughly 36 cents per mile, is one of the highest rates of any toll road in the United States. There are five toll stations along the 47-mile (76 km) route and the average toll to pass each is $3.33. Traveling the entire length of the road from I-25 in the north to I-25 in the south (or vice versa) costs $13.25 for ExpressToll customers, and $16.65 for those without a transponder. The toll stations no longer accept cash; E-470 was one of the first highways in the United States to implement full highway-speed electronic tolling. Cameras at each station photograph the front and rear license plate of each vehicle. A bill is mailed after approximately 30 days to the registered owner of the vehicle in accordance with C.R.S 43-4-506.5 (6)(a). Failure to pay the bill on time results in a $5 late fee after 30 days, followed by a $15 collection fee after 60 days, and a $25 penalty after a total of five months, and then an additional $20 court charge after six months totaling a maximum penalty of $65 for each unpaid set of tolls.
Drivers with EXpressToll accounts, E-470's automated toll collection service, and transponders mounted on their vehicle save 20% on posted toll rates along E-470.
Plans for this eastern extension of State Highway 470 gained momentum in the 1980s, as Denver moved forward with plans for a new international airport in its corridor. Recognizing the highway's development potential, a number of local governments joined together to create the E-470 Public Highway Authority, a quasi-governmental entity that would construct the highway. In 1987, the Public Highway Authority Law was passed by the Colorado State Legislature, giving the E-470 Public Highway Authority the power to do everything needed to plan, design, finance, construct, and operate the toll highway. The highway would be financed through tolls, a relative rarity in the western U.S.
The first section, between I-25 in the south and Parker Road in Douglas County, opened to traffic June 1, 1991. Tolling began on July 15, making E-470 the first highway in the United States to implement open road electronic tolling. The highway was opened segment by segment until the final stretch connecting to I-25 in the north in Adams County opened on January 3, 2003.
In its early years, traffic was light as the completed portion was short and traversed a largely undeveloped area. With the opening of Denver International Airport in 1995, E-470 came in as a direct route to the airport from the rapidly growing southern tier of the metropolitan area. Upon its completion, the highway provided the same access for northern Colorado, itself a high-growth area. However, perhaps the most significant growth in the region will occur in the E-470 corridor itself, which spawned numerous annexations by member cities; Commerce City, Colorado has doubled in land area in anticipation of this new development. In the coming decades, 250,000 new residents are expected along the E-470 corridor in Aurora alone, which would nearly double that city's population.
Up until 2006, E-470 had four signalized intersections with I-70 and its outer roads, which often got congested at peak hours. By 2004 this interchange proved too inadequate for the traffic it was receiving. The Fly-By was completed in 2006 and allows customers to bypass the signals if continuing on E-470. Traffic going to or from I-70 still uses the old road and intersections, although E-470 is currently in the process of designing a direct connection with I-70. In 2007, Ramp H was completed, providing a direct connection from northbound E-470 to westbound I-70. The I-70/E-470 Fly-By Interchange Complex in Aurora was recognized by the Design Build Institute of America (DBIA) with a National Design Build Award in 2008.
In November 2014, an additional interchange opened at Quebec Street in Thornton.
|Douglas||Lone Tree||0.000||0.000||1A|| I‑25 – Denver, Colorado Springs
|South end of E-470; roadway continues as west SH 470|
|1B||Jamaica Street to County Line Road||Westbound exit and eastbound entrance|
|1.711||2.754||2||Peoria Street – Centennial Airport|
|2.700||4.345||Toll Plaza A (Cars $2.45/$3.05 with/without ExpressToll)|
|4.380||7.049||4||Jordan Road – Parker|
|Parker||5.180||8.336||5||SH 83 (Parker Road) – Parker, Centennial, Aurora|
|10.683||17.193||10||Smoky Hill Road|
|13.352||21.488||13||Quincy Avenue – Aurora|
|16.150||25.991||Toll Plaza B (Cars $2.70/$3.40 with/without ExpressToll)|
|16.451||26.475||16||Jewell Avenue to Iliff Avenue|
|20.375||32.790||20||I‑70 / Colfax Avenue, 19th Avenue, Gun Club Road – Limon, Aurora, Denver||Northbound exits signed as 20A (east) and 20B (west), southbound exit 20, no toll either direction|
|Adams||22.610||36.387||Toll Plaza C (Cars $2.70/$3.40 with/without ExpressToll)|
|24.477||39.392||24||56th Avenue – Front Range Airport|
|City and County of Denver||27.849||44.819||28||Peña Boulevard – Denver International Airport||Signed as exits 28A (east) and 28B (west)|
|Adams||Commerce City||Toll Plaza D (Cars $2.70/$3.40 with/without ExpressToll)|
|34.130||54.927||34||To I‑76 west / 120th Avenue|
|35.491||57.117||35||I‑76 east – Fort Morgan||Northbound exit to eastbound I-76 and southbound entrance from westbound I-76|
|Brighton||38.465||61.903||38||US 85 to I‑76 west – Brighton, Greeley, Commerce City, Denver|
|Todd Creek||40.220||64.728||Toll Plaza E (Cars $2.70/$3.40 with/without ExpressToll)|
|Thornton||41.710||67.126||41||Quebec Street||Opened on November 24, 2014|
|43.817||70.517||43||Colorado Boulevard – Thornton|
|47|| I‑25 – Fort Collins, Denver
|North end of E-470; roadway continues west as Northwest Parkway|
|1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi
- Staff. "Highway Data". Colorado Department of Transportation. Retrieved October 2007. Note that not every interval between mileposts is exactly a mile, explaining why more exits than expected are at the exact milepost.
- Staff (2011). "Calculating Tolls". E-470 Public Highway Authority. Retrieved January 9, 2012.
- Lewis, Al (January 1, 2006). "Toll roads: Future fodder for the Junk Bond Market: Roads take their toll on wallets". The Denver Post. Retrieved January 9, 2012.
- Staff (2011). "How E-470 Works". E-470 Public Highway Authority. Retrieved January 9, 2012.
- Staff (2005). "C.R.S 43-4-506.5 (6)(a)". Colorado Revised Statutes. Colorado General Assembly. Retrieved January 9, 2012.
- Staff (2011). "Tolls". E-470 Public Highway Authority. Retrieved January 9, 2012.
- Staff (2011). "EXpress Toll". E-470 Public Highway Authority. Retrieved January 9, 2012.
- "Cashless E-470 takes toll on rental-car drivers in the form of fines". The Denver Post. November 29, 2009. Retrieved August 5, 2013.
- Staff (2011). "History". E-470 Public Highway Authority. Retrieved February 11, 2013.
- Colorado Revised Statutes §§ 43-4-501 et seq.
- "Wikipedia declares DNT and E470 both 'first' in electronic tolling". TollRoadsNews. August 19, 2012. Retrieved August 20, 2012.
- "E-470 Historical Fact File" (PDF). E-470 Website. E-470 Public Highway Authority. Retrieved February 14, 2012.
- Hendee, Caitlin (November 24, 2014). "E-470 interchange in Thornton opens". Denver Business Journal. Retrieved November 24, 2014.