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Arizona Receives $95M for Interstate 10 Expansion Project

Wed February 21, 2024 - West Edition #4
ADOT


This 26-mi. stretch of the I-10 is the only remaining “gap or unimproved section of the I-10, which creates bottlenecks and traffic delays for all who travel this section of the I-10.
Photo courtesy of ADOT
This 26-mi. stretch of the I-10 is the only remaining “gap or unimproved section of the I-10, which creates bottlenecks and traffic delays for all who travel this section of the I-10."
This 26-mi. stretch of the I-10 is the only remaining “gap or unimproved section of the I-10, which creates bottlenecks and traffic delays for all who travel this section of the I-10. The grant was awarded to improve the safety and conditions on the 26-mi. stretch of the I-10 located entirely within the boundaries of the Gila River Indian Community.   (Photo courtesy of ADOT)

Arizona Gov. Katie Hobbs recently announced that the state will receive a $95 million INFRA grant from the U.S. Department of Transportation for major improvements to widen Interstate 10.

The grant was awarded to improve the safety and conditions on the 26-mi. stretch of I-10 located entirely within the boundaries of the Gila River Indian Community.

The I-10 corridor is a main corridor for all Arizonans, with parts of this project area seeing up to 120,000 vehicles daily. This 26-mi. stretch of the I-10 is the only remaining "gap or unimproved section of the I-10, which creates bottlenecks and traffic delays for all who travel this section of the I-10."

The overall project adds a third lane, meaning the freeway will have three lanes both ways between Arizona's two most populous cities. It also includes the reconstruction of the I-10 bridges over the Gila River and six interchanges. The federal grant is a competitive funding award through the U.S. Department of Transportation INFRA Grant Program.

The grant will contribute to the construction of the section of the project from just south of Casa Blanca Road to just south of State Route 387. Construction on I-10 is scheduled to launch in early 2024, with the first work including the removal and replacement of the Gila River bridges over I-10.

Corridor Improvements

Adding a new general-purpose lane in the east- and westbound directions, extending the High Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) Lane on I-10 from Loop 202 to Riggs Road and improving interchanges and crossroads will increase capacity and access. This improves safety by reducing congestion and travel times and lessening detoured traffic on the Gila River Indian Community.

Key improvements include:

  • Replacing I-10 bridges over the Gila River will maintain a state of good repair by modernizing this key infrastructure;
  • Building new and improved traffic interchanges creates safer crossings for farm equipment, bicyclists and pedestrians and boosts connections and quality of life;
  • Installing fiber optic infrastructure within ADOT Right-of-Way will allow for the installation of sensors, cameras and other highway safety-related technology.

Obtaining funding for this project was a top priority for Hobbs, the Gila River Indian Community, the Arizona Congressional delegation and the Arizona State Legislature, and was made possible through coordination between Hobbs, GRIC Gov. Stephen Roe Lewis and the Arizona Department of Transportation.

This grant represents a unique partnership of governments, involving state, federal, tribal and county governments in the planning and development of the grant to address the safety and infrastructure needs in Arizona and within the Gila River Indian Community.

Project Funding

"The I-10 serves as a major connector for the entire state and I am thrilled to announce that we have secured the funds necessary to ensure it remains a gateway for generations to come," said Hobbs. "By securing this investment, we are not only improving our state's infrastructure, we are propelling Arizona's economy forward, ensuring a prosperous future for all. I want to thank Governor Lewis for his tireless advocacy and our federal partners for helping make this possible."

"The announcement," said Lewis, "is the culmination of a year-long effort to obtain the final funding necessary to complete this critical part of the state's and the community's transportation network. When we learned last year that Arizona would not be receiving a federal grant for this project, I immediately contacted Governor Hobbs, and together we rolled up our sleeves and got this new grant proposal together, focusing largely on the importance of this road to our community and we presented it together to Secretary Buttigieg, a first in our state, and probably in the entire country. I want to personally thank Governor Hobbs for her partnership in this effort and the Department of Transportation for its understanding and commitment to historically disadvantaged communities in Indian Country, such as ours. I also think it is very important to thank our allies and partners in the State Legislature who provided critical additional funding to help fill the gap and advocated right alongside us in Washington for this new grant."

Photo courtesy of ADOT

The grant funding will be added to the $692 million in state of Arizona funding appropriated for the project and a $221 million contribution from the Maricopa Association of Governments (MAG) through Proposition 400. The total project cost is estimated at just over $1 billion.

"I'm proud to secure these funds for I-10's expansion through my bipartisan infrastructure law," said U.S. Sen. Kyrsten Sinema, co-author and lead negotiator of the bipartisan infrastructure law. "I promised Arizonans I'd do the hard work to deliver real results, not lip service —today's investment is one of many more to come for Arizona from my bipartisan infrastructure law,"

"Too many of us have spent hours stuck in traffic on I-10 between Phoenix and Tucson," said Sen. Mark Kelly. "And for decades, residents and tribal members have been impacted by major bottlenecks preventing them from fully accessing jobs, housing, schools and health care. Thanks to our Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, these delays will be a thing of the past. I've fought to secure the funding for this expansion since I came to the Senate, and it was a top priority of mine when negotiating that law. This project will reduce congestion, improve shipping and make I-10 safer. This investment — one of the largest ever in transportation infrastructure in a tribal community — will be a game-changer for the Gila River Indian Community and is a testament to the leadership of Governor Lewis."

"I-10 is an infamous thoroughfare in Arizona notoriously known for its delays and traffic," said Rep. Raùl Grijalva. "This federal funding is a long-term investment that will benefit our state by making certain this corridor has the capacity to serve Arizonans. I'm proud to have supported this funding in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and will continue to support economic investments that provide modernization, accessibility, and sustainability to our transportation network."

"ADOT is excited to receive this funding and to work on this critical project," said ADOT Director Jennifer Toth. "The federal grant dollars are critical for expanding the principal roadway between Phoenix and Tucson. The project will deliver the best infrastructure to improve drive times and enhance safety. We thank the Gila River Indian Community for their tremendous partnership and collaboration, along with our federal, regional, and local partners."

The grant, funded through investments from the bipartisan infrastructure law, provides necessary funding for the southernmost segment of the 26-mi. stretch and completes funding for the upcoming expansion of I-10 between Phoenix and Casa Grande.

Key Commerce Corridor

As the principal roadway between metro Phoenix and Tucson for commuters, cross-country travelers, and commercial traffic, I-10 is a Key Commerce Corridor for Arizona and the United States. The freeway provides a vital link for freight traffic from the ports of southern California and for international commerce, with a significant amount of freight transported along the route daily. The proposed improvements will boost the reliability of freight traffic in the corridor.




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