PROVO — Commuters beware.
Paving operations on I-15 at various locations in Utah County will restrict traffic to two lanes through Friday, according to the Utah Department of Transportation.
The good news for Utah County motorists is that it will affect only northbound traffic and only during off-peak hours.
On Sunday, northbound I-15 from Main Street to 1200 West in Lehi will be reduced to two lanes from 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Lane restrictions on northbound I-15 will continue from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday-Friday in American Fork, Lehi and Orem. The construction is part of the carpool connection project that will extend carpool lanes from the Alpine interchange in Lehi to the University Parkway exit in Orem.
The expansion, which is expected to be complete in early summer 2006, will create a total of 40 miles of carpool lanes on I-15. Cost for the widening project is estimated at $42 million — $30 million of which was allocated through the Transportation Improvement Fund created by the state Legislature. The remaining $12 million was funded by the federal government.
The project includes the expansion of bridges at 13 locations, filling in the median and replacing the cable barrier with a concrete barrier.
"There are areas leading up to the new bridge sections that aren't paved yet," said Geoffrey Dupaix, public involvement coordinator for UDOT. "They're going to try to get those completed during the daytime because asphalt is temperature-sensitive."
Paving of the tie-ins — areas where the asphalt meets the bridge — must be done before winter arrives, Dupaix said.
"And the window is rapidly closing," he said.
Dupaix said motorists should expect moderate delays due to heavy equipment accessing the area. The already-crowded southbound lanes through Utah County will not be affected by the daytime work, he said.
"We realize that anytime you close a lane of the interstate, it will cause some backup," Dupaix said. "But the northbound lanes tend to thin out (in off-peak hours.)"
Overnight closures of U.S. 189 in Provo Canyon for excavation work will also continue next week near Deer Creek Dam, according to UDOT.
The highway will be closed between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m. beginning Monday. Work is expected to be completed Friday. Motorists will need to use I-15 and I-80 as alternative routes.
Closure information is posted on the project Web site at www.udot.utah.gov/provo-canyon and on electronic roadway signs located near Provo Canyon and on U.S. 40, I-15 and I-80.
UDOT encourages motorists to use caution and travel at the posted speed limits while driving through work zones. Schedules are subject to change due to inclement weather, equipment problems or emergency situations.