FOUNTAIN, Colo. - A wildlife fence along Interstate 25 will cost taxpayers almost $1 million, and there are mixed feelings about the price tag.
Colorado Department of Transportation crews have already started working on the fence that will start at Exit 128 in Fountain and run six miles south to the Pikes Peak International Raceway. CDOT says the project will also include cattle guards and ramps for animals to get across the interstate.
On the KRDO Facebook page, some called it a "waste of tax dollars," saying drivers should be alert, and that there are more important things for the state to spend money on.
But for some who've had close encounters with animals on the interstate, this project couldn't come soon enough.
Jason Morriss said he had to make a quick decision when he encountered a deer carcass in his lane as he drove to work at 4:30 a.m. He said there was a car blocking him from going around it.
"I kind of gritted my teeth and launched the car right off the deer," said Morriss.
His car was damaged, but Morriss was OK. He said a state patrol trooper told him he was lucky.
"He said that if I would've slammed on my brakes, the dear carcass could have come through the windshield and possibly really hurt me or killed me," said Morriss.
Other drivers haven't been as fortunate. Commuters who drive that part of I-25 say wildlife is very common both along and in the roadway.
"That stretch is so bad I'm looking more at the side of the road than the car in front of me," said Jemal Duran. "I've seen some horrible things at night involving animals and cars. Pretty horrific accidents. It gives me peace of mind knowing that this is what the fence will be for."
CDOT said the project will be finished by the end of June, and drivers may see some lane closures as crews work in that area.