Freeway work affects drivers headed west this weekend

Crews will work this weekend on a project that will help lead to the South Mountain Freeway connecting the East Valley with the West Valley late next year. (Submitted photo)

Motorists traveling to the West Valley this weekend should allow extra time and plan ahead to avoid a closure of westbound Interstate 10 between 51st and 67th avenues for construction of the Loop 202 South Mountain Freeway, according to the Arizona Department of Transportation.

Westbound I-10 will be closed between 51st and 67th avenues from 10 p.m. Friday, June 8, to 5 p.m. Sunday, June 10.

With heavy traffic and delays expected, ADOT recommends drivers consider alternate routes such as Loop 101 (Agua Fria Freeway) west of Interstate 17.

During the closure, westbound I-10 traffic can exit the freeway at 51st Avenue, detour either north to McDowell Road or south to Van Buren Street and return to westbound I-10 at 67th Avenue, according to ADOT.

The newly built westbound I-10 access road between 51st and 67th avenues also will remain open during construction.

“The closure will allow crews to remove temporary structures on a concrete pier structure, known as a straddle bent, that will support one of the flyover bridges connecting I-10 with the South Mountain Freeway,” ADOT officials reported in a release.

The 22-mile South Mountain Freeway, expected to open by late 2019, will provide a long-planned direct link between the East Valley and West Valley and an alternative to I-10 through downtown Phoenix.

Approved by Maricopa County voters in 1985 and again in 2004 as part of a comprehensive regional transportation plan, the South Mountain Freeway will complete the Loop 202 and Loop 101 freeway system in the Valley.

ADOT officials stated there is a possibility that unscheduled closures or restrictions will occur in the area for a number of reasons, including weather.

For more information, call the ADOT Project Information Line at 855-712-8530.

The Queen Creek Independent is mailed each month to 35,000 homes.

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