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Road construction season is here. UDOT will spend billions on projects

Utah Department of Transportation crews work on the Mountain View Corridor projects in Utah County on April 25, 2024. The $466 million project will create a new route to Salt Lake County — bypassing I-15
Saige Miller
Utah Department of Transportation crews work on the Mountain View Corridor projects in Utah County on April 25, 2024. The $466 million project will create a new route to Salt Lake County — bypassing I-15

As temperatures begin to rise, so too are the number of construction projects the Utah Department of Transportation is working on.

“If you're out driving the state, there's a very good likelihood that you're going to run into some orange construction barrels,” said John Gleason, UDOT’s public relations director.

In all, the agency is spending more than $2.74 billion on 209 projects statewide. Gleason said crews will be working on everything from widening highways to patching pesky potholes.

But the projects with the highest price tag deal with roadway expansions. Gleason said adding additional lanes and new interchanges is necessary to accommodate the growing population and improve the flow of traffic.

Weber County

Roughly $360 million is going toward a project in Weber County. UDOT is constructing a new Interstate 15 interchange at 5600 South in Roy that will “make it easier to get to and from Hill Air Force Base,” one of the largest employers in the state. It will also widen 5600 South from three lanes to five from I-15 to 3500 West.

Cache County

In Cache County, $61 million is being allocated to the expansion of State Route 30. Gleason said there have been major safety concerns about the frequently traveled road and that the goal is to improve safety.

“We're widening that to four lanes. And this is an area that has had a lot of crashes over the years because more and more people are using it.”

Salt Lake County — Bangerter Highway

Bangerter Highway construction in Salt Lake County isn’t going away anytime soon, either. Gleason said “major construction will ramp up” on the long term project as crews build four new freeway-style interchanges and remove four stoplights.

“That's going to allow people to shave time off of their commute and really improve safety,” he said, “because anytime you can take those traffic lights out, you're improving safety because you're removing a conflict point.”

Construction on the interchange is expected to be completed by the end of 2025 at a cost of more than $415 million.

Utah and Salt Lake counties — Mountain View Corridor

However, the most expensive project is an entirely new connecting corridor for Utah and Salt Lake counties, at about $466 million. Right next to a ballooning housing development in Eagle Mountain is miles of dirt road. UDOT and contract employees are laying the groundwork for the Mountain View Corridor.

“The residents of northern Utah County — like Lehi, Saratoga Springs, Eagle Mountain — [will] be able to have that connection that goes from their home … to Salt Lake County,” said Andrew Jordan, the director of the Mountain View Corridor projects. “This will be that direct connection, that alternative to I-15.”

Phase one will build two lanes in each direction of the highway. Jordan added, because of rapid growth in Utah County, especially around Eagle Mountain, there is the potential for “four lanes in each direction” in the future. Phase two will be the addition of a new freeway near Eagle Mountain. Jordan said funding is already set aside for that project and they will likely break ground in 2027.

Along with the new road, crews are also building a paved multi-use trail “that will have connections to the existing trail network on Mountain View Corridor in Salt Lake County,” Jordan said.

“We really try to plan on just not getting the cars where they need to [go], but give multiple choices to our customers, really and to the public.”

The Mountain View Corridor isn’t the only project getting new trails, either. Gleason said UDOT is building “miles and miles” of new trails with some of the projects, including the one in Weber County.

“Give people the options to travel in the way that they wish to travel. Driving, walking, biking, using transit. We need everybody to maximize those methods of transportation,” Gleason said.

“The people that are moving here, the businesses that are moving here, the growth that we're seeing, we're not going to be able to get around safely and efficiently by just looking at one aspect of transportation.”

Saige is a politics reporter and co-host of KUER's State Street politics podcast
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