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I-17 Improvement Project Construction Set to Begin in 2022 on 23-Mile Section of Highway North of Phoenix

By on October 29, 2021 0 684Views

The Arizona Department of Transportation has signed an agreement with the developer team that will design, build, operate and maintain the Interstate 17 Improvement Project from Anthem Way to Sunset Point.

The total project cost is $445,940,000, which includes the construction cost by the developer team, along with ADOT’s cost to administer the project.

Construction is scheduled to begin in 2022 and is expected to take approximately three years. Now that the contract is signed, work can begin on this highly anticipated project that will include 15 miles of widening from Anthem Way to Black Canyon City and eight miles of flex lanes from Black Canyon City to Sunset Point.

The developer team is Kiewit-Fann Joint Venture. Key members of the team include Kiewit Infrastructure West Co.; Fann Contracting Inc.; Kiewit Engineering Group Inc.; DBI Services LLC; CONSOR Engineers LLC dba Apex Design; T.Y. Lin International; Lee Engineering; Terracon Consultants Inc.; Wheat Design Group, Inc.; Y2K Engineering; and Pinyon Environmental Inc.

The KFJV developer team was selected over two other finalists after an extensive review by ADOT with oversight from representatives from the Federal Highway Administration and the Maricopa Association of Governments. All three developer team finalists were encouraged to use innovation and develop alternative concepts to reduce project time and impacts to the traveling public and community while construction is underway.

Interstate 17 between Anthem Way and Sunset Point is a major stretch of highway that sees more than one million travelers every year. Because much of that travel and congestion occur on weekends, ADOT and the KFJV developer team will limit most of the lane closures to weeknights from 7 p.m. to 6 a.m. All motorists still need to be cautious and alert in the construction zone, which will be active seven days a week.

Once complete, the I-17 Improvement Project will help alleviate congestion and improve safety and traffic flow north of the metro-Phoenix region. This project will improve 23 miles of I-17, including 15 miles of roadway widening, two bridge replacements, one bridge deck replacement, 10 bridge widenings, and the installation of an eight-mile flex lane system—a new feature  for Arizona’s highway system. Flex lanes are proven technology to help reduce congestion on I-17 during peak travel times and allow for traffic movement during emergency situations.

The I-17 flex lanes will operate as a separate, two-lane roadway carrying one direction of traffic at a time depending on the greatest need along the steep, winding eight miles between Black Canyon City and Sunset Point. For example, the flex lanes will be able to carry heavy northbound traffic on a Friday or heavy southbound traffic on a Sunday. Similarly, ADOT will be able to open the flex lanes to accommodate traffic any time if a crash or other incident causes long delays. The flex lanes will be next to, but physically separated from southbound I-17 using concrete barriers. Access to the flex-lane entrances will be controlled by gates.

In February, Governor Ducey announced $40 million in funding for the I-17 Improvement Project from higher-than-anticipated revenue amid Arizona’s strong economic recovery and federal COVID-relief funds. Additional project funding sources include:

$130 million of state highway funds appropriated by the state legislature in 2019
$90 million from an Infrastructure for Rebuilding America (INFRA) grant
$50 million programmed by the Maricopa Association of Governments (MAG) for the Maricopa County portion of this project
$135.9 million from federal aid with matching state highway funds. That includes $83.6 million approved by the Arizona State Transportation Board on Oct. 15, clearing the way for construction to begin in 2022.

For more information about the I-17 Improvement Project, visit azdot.gov/i17-anthem-way-to-sunset-point.