The Salt Lake Tribune reported that this year, 2012, will carry upwards of 200 construction projects. It’s estimated that this will be the most construction ever performed in one year. The largest, most time consuming project is, of course, the I-15 core project from Lehi, Utah to Spanish Fork, Utah. This project will make the freeway wider by two lanes. The project is projected to complete in December of 2012. Thus far, the project is close to 70 percent completed. The remaining 30 percent should be completed at the end of this fall. Drivers should expect delays throughout the summer.
UDOT released on Thursday a guide for its construction plans for this summer to help commuters understand what to expect in delays and closures. A copy is readily available at sltrib.com, The Salt Lake Tribune news website. Updates will be made to the construction information throughout the season. This information will be made available at www.udot.utah.gov.
Another major construction project to be opened this year is the Mountain View Corridor. It will run between 16000 South and 5400 south in Salt Lake County. Although it is not anticipated to have much effect on traffic, it will affect many crossroads. The first phase of this project is expected to be completed at the end of this year. The first phase will include frontage roads for a future freeway along the corridor that will stretch north to I-80.
Several other construction projects are expected to take place such as: repairing concrete on and off-ramps, replacing bridges, resurfacing roads and others. Drivers should pay attention to lane changes, lane closures, ramp closures, and nighttime construction work when much of the construction is performed. Altogether, the collective construction projects will provide 171 lane miles of reconstructed and rehabilitated roadways.
As a Utah accident lawyer, while I’m glad that more lanes are being added, I’m very disappointed in how sloppy the work appears at time. For example, the striping in certain areas is horrible at best. There are times when because of old striping, I’m not sure if I’m in the correct lane, and then a car starts moving over toward me. Yikes! It can be frightening. UDOT and its contractors need to make sure the old lines are removed before they put down new ones in a different location! Signage is also a problem in spots. For example, you sometimes only find out at the last second where the off-ramp is, when there is not time to safely move over. At least five times, I’ve gotten off the freeway in the wrong area. And I’ve seen other motorists who have done the same. This past weekend, a friend of mine who was driving, exited the freeway, following behind another car, when that driver didn’t turn tight enough and he ended up driving right into a dead-end dirt area that ran parallel to the road he intended to turn on. These are just a few examples, but overall I’m concerned that UDOT and its contractors, including Wadsworth Brothers, are playing fast and loose with the motoring public’s safety. I wish these contractors would pay more attention to safety then completing the project ahead of schedule so they can get their performance bonus.
Ron Kramer is a Utah personal injury and accident lawyer practicing throughout the state. Call the Kramer Law Group today at 801-601-1229 for a free consultation if you are in need of a Utah construction accident attorney.