Estimated read time: 2-3 minutes
Construction on Interstate 80 is nearing the halfway mark, and a major traffic shift is only two weeks away.
Road builders replaced a dozen bridges during the summer. Now they're working to finish the pavement on the eastbound lanes. The project manager tells us they are right on schedule. Motorists can see a lot of progress as they drive through the corridor.
A new concrete surface on I-80 is nearly ready for traffic. Construction moves steadily in the westbound lanes. Crews make headway on sound walls, too, which will line about two-thirds of the project.
I-80 Project Manager John Montoya said, "We're probably nearing the halfway point, which we anticipate to be at in December."
That's when all traffic shifts to the new surface the length of the two-and-a-half-mile project and crews start to rebuild the eastbound lanes. But in just a couple of weeks, all traffic will shift to the new surface from 700 East to 1300 East.
Wayne Bowden, a project manager for Wadsworth Construction, said, "(There will be) three lanes in each direction. Nice and smooth concrete pavement and off the old rough stuff."
While the Utah Department of Transportation (UDOT) used an innovative technique to build the westbound bridges off-site and move them into place, crews will build the eastbound bridges in the conventional way.
Traffic flow should improve with the addition of one more lane.
John Montoya said, "We've maintained the five lanes of traffic, three in the peak direction, throughout the last year and really haven't reduced the capacity of this corridor while we've been rebuilding it."
Road building costs have soared in recent years, but the UDOT project manager says this project will stay within the budget.
Project managers ask motorists to observe the speed limit and stay alert in the construction zone.