In September 2013, a powerful flood devastated 2,380 square miles in Colorado’s Front Range. 

The federal government declared an emergency across 15 counties between Colorado Springs and Fort Collins, and the flood eventually destroyed or damaged more than 18,000 homes. In the wake of this disaster, the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) asked AEM to identify design alternatives in order to improve transportation infrastructure and to mitigate future loss.

Combining transportation expertise with our PARRE™ tool, AEM assessed the vulnerabilities, risks, and resiliencies of CDOT infrastructure following the flood. These findings benefited CDOT as well as the Federal Highway Administration’s (FHWA) Emergency Relief Program, which sought economically justifiable design alternatives and accurate projections of annualized monetary risks. AEM’s research efforts collected information regarding vulnerabilities across a wide variety of topographical regions, from canyons to plains, and enabled the incorporation of risk into delivery of future CDOT projects.