Executive Director Carlos Braceras recently awarded the Mountain View Corridor project team, Cedar City and Granger-Hunter Improvement District with a Silver Barrel award for their partnering efforts in saving taxpayers $500,000. Award Recipients included:

  • Brad Paxman, Granger-Hunter Improvement District
  • Johnathon Stathis, Cedar City Water Dept.
  • Josh Vanjura – UDOT
  • Barney Mekkmellom, UDOT
  • Jessie Barton, MVC team member (Parsons Brinkerhoff)
  • Mayor Maile Wilson, Cedar City Mayor
  • Joe Kammerer, UDOT

MVC Silver Barrel

UDOT and Granger-Hunter Improvement District (GHID) worked together to relocate a 2 million gallon water tank to Cedar City that was moved to make way for the Mountain View Corridor (MVC). By recycling existing resources, UDOT, GHID and Cedar City saved taxpayers $500,000.

UDOT is currently preparing for the next phase of construction on the Mountain View Corridor from 5400 South to 4100 South in West Valley City. The project needed to relocate an older steel water tank near 4300 South. The water tank held 2 million gallons of water that proved to be too small for the growing area. UDOT and GHID worked together to build a new 4 million gallon concrete water tank and built it in the neighborhood adjacent to the future roadway.

Instead of disposing of the old water tank material, UDOT and GHD researched ways to re-use it. Cedar City was in need of a new water tank and contacted GHID. The water tank was dismantled and transported to its new location for reassembly.

This water tank in Cedar City was once in the Mountain View Corridor project path in Salt Lake County.

This water tank in Cedar City was once in the Mountain View Corridor project path in Salt Lake County.

“We are always looking for ways to create positive outcomes during the construction process,” said Joe Kammerer, MVC Project Director. “This is a great example of government and utility companies working together to save taxpayer money.”

Mountain View Corridor consists of two lanes open in each direction from 16000 South to 5400 South. MVC will eventually be a 35-mile freeway from I-80 in Salt Lake to Lehi Main Street.

If you would like to learn more about the Mountain View Corridor project, visit udot.utah.gov/mountainview. To learn more about Granger-Hunter Improvement District, visit http://www.ghid.org/. To learn more about Cedar City, visit http://www.cedarcity.org/.

This post was written by Crystal McMillan, associate account manager on the MVC project team. 

Editor’s Note: This post was written by Eileen Barron, Region Three Communications Manager. You can follow the news from the region by following @UDOTRegion3. 

It’s something we can all relate to: that long list of things you’d like to do, if only you had time. The good news for UDOT’s maintenance crews is that the light snowfall and warm temperatures in January and February have allowed us to get a jump-start on our to-do list. UDOT’s crews in the six-county area of Region Three have performed more than half a million dollars of maintenance during the first eight weeks of 2015. Here’s a sample of what we’ve been up to:

Crack sealing: UDOT prolongs the life and quality of our pavement by sealing cracks with an asphalt sealant. Sealing cracks reduces the amount of moisture getting underneath the pavement that can damage the subsurface of the roadway. Crews have done more than $50,000 of crack sealing, including sections of Nephi Main Street, Redwood Road west of Utah Lake, Timpanogos Highway in Highland and SR-113 in Midway. Crews have also performed $50,000 in pot hole patching.

UDOT Crews perform a crack seal on a portion of SR-92 in Utah County.

UDOT crews perform a crack seal on a portion of SR-92 in Utah County.

Road sweeping and litter pick-up: UDOT has a regular schedule of sweeping roads and shoulders to remove debris. The mild winter has allowed crews to do some extra clean-up in terms of litter control and sweeping. More than $100,000 has been expended cleaning up Utah’s roads. Crews have also performed almost $10,000 in tree trimming.

Sign repair and replacement: Crews have replaced or repaired signs and sign posts throughout the region in locations such as I-15 in Utah County, US-40 north of Heber and near Duchesne as well as SR-32 south of Jordanelle Reservoir near Francis. We installed all new milepost signs on Pioneer Crossing in Lehi and Saratoga Springs and on SR-129 North County Boulevard in American Fork. Region-wide, the total spent on signs the first two months of 2015 is nearly $90,000.

Cable barrier, guardrail and fence repair: We have repaired or replaced cable barrier and guardrail in places like Provo Canyon and the Mayflower area of US-40. These repairs help maintain safety on the roadway. We have also repaired snow fencing on SR-92 and right of way fencing on I-15 between Springville and Lindon. These fences help the functionality of our roadways by minimizing blowing snow and keeping animals off the interstate. Fencing has also been repaired on US-6 in Spanish Fork Canyon and US-89 near Thistle. Attenuators that act as crash cushions and delineators that help mark driving lanes have also been replaced and repaired along several routes, including a stretch of US-40 near Strawberry Reservoir. More than $100,000 has been spent on repairs of these roadside features.

A truck passes by a cable barrier on the interstate.

A truck passes by a cable barrier on the interstate.

Cleaning out culverts and drains: UDOT crews have also been cleaning out culverts and drainage features in areas such as I-15 from Springville to Lindon, SR-132 in Salt Creek Canyon, SR-191 south of Duchesne and SR-87 north of Duchesne. This is a regular spring maintenance activity that we are able to initiate earlier this year due to mild temperatures. Drainage for water run-off is designed as part of our projects and maintenance crews make sure these drains and culverts are clear from debris so they function properly. Nearly $40,000 in drainage activities have been recorded in Region Three during January and February.

Our Orem crew cleans drains along a part of I-15.

Our Orem crew cleans drains along a part of I-15.

Accident response and repairs: UDOT crews are called upon to make repairs and clean-up the roadway after a crash. Activities may include repair of fence or barrier, signs and sweeping. These are often recoverable expenses for the department paid for by drivers’ insurance. More than $60,000 in accident repair has taken place in Region Three in 2015.

SALT LAKE CITY — The Utah Department of Transportation (UDOT) has prepared the Draft 2040 Long Range Transportation Plan (LRP), and is requesting public comment on it.

The State of Utah has a 30-year plan in urban and rural areas. The LRP is what guides transportation system improvements on State and Federal highways in rural Utah. The plan provides an assessment of future area transportation needs, along with future transportation investment recommendations. It is developed in accordance with federal regulations and updated every four years.

UDOT Urban Planning Manager Walter Steinvorth said public input is essential on the LRP.

“Not only does it build stronger bridges between the Department and rural Utah, but it also gives residents a chance to identify projects that are important to them that could possibly get overlooked.” Steinvorth said.

Not only is the LRP important for people who live in rural Utah, but it also important for the public who vacation in the area, and for those who transport goods in and through the state. While UDOT welcomes public comment from all citizens, Steinvorth stressed the great need for those in under-represented parts of the population to let the department know of their concerns.

“We collect an awful lot of data. That data and analysis doesn’t always give us the full picture,” Steinvorth said.  “We need our citizens and users to help us find what is important to them in their community.”

The Draft 2040 LRP will be available for review at http://udot.utah.gov/go/lrp from March 1, 2015, through April 30, 2015. Comments may be directed to planning@utah.gov or submitted through the comment application at the listed website.

UDOT has been nominated in three categories for the Golden Post Awards, and we need your help voting online here!

Final nominees for the Golden Post Awards — the first awards program for state and local government social media efforts in the U.S. — will be chosen based on the public’s votes, comments, and a review of the Government Social Media Conference Awards team. UDOT is nominated for “Best Social Media Campaign”, ”Social Media for Citizen Engagement” and “Outstanding Social Media Results”.  All three nominations are for the department’s “Twist” ad, which debuted during Super Bowl XLVIII in February 2014.

UDOT ran this thought-provoking ad to raise awareness about the danger an unbuckled passenger poses to others. The ad ran on television during Super Bowl XLVIII, and was met with some controversy. Initial social media responses indicated that some viewers were appalled by the hard-hitting commercial, especially with families and young children watching.

After the first 24 hours, the tone on social media had shifted as the majority recognized the ad was meant to spark awareness and conversation. Car crash victims and family members spoke out, applauding Zero Fatalities for talking about seat belt safety.

The campaign was successful because it got people talking, regardless of what side of the argument they were on.

  • “Twist” reached nearly half a million Utahns aged 18 to 49 who were watching the Super Bowl
  • Posts about “Twist” on just the Zero Fatalities Facebook page reached 148,032 people and featured 389 likes, 198 shares, 146 total comments
  • Within 24 hours after the ad aired, there were 1,385 positive comments and only 325 negative comments on all of the local media’s Facebook feeds (81 percent favorable, 19 percent negative)
  • In a survey conducted three months following the Super Bowl, 72 percent of all respondents said they were influenced by “Twist” to always wear a seat belt

Show your support for seat belts and the Zero Fatalities educational ad by voting at http://conference.governmentsocialmedia.com/golden-post-awards/voting/. The deadline to vote is Friday, March 6 (by midnight PST) and finalists will be named March 12. Winners will be announced on April 30 at #GSMCON.

Be sure to check out all 9 categories, as there are other Utah government accounts competing as well!

SALT LAKE CITY — The Utah Department of Transportation (UDOT) announced today its top 15 road construction projects for 2015.

More than 180 construction projects are scheduled statewide this year, and motorists will need to plan accordingly. This season, UDOT is adding new lanes to freeways and highways, and building new roads to keep Utah moving. Crews will continue to perform maintenance on the state’s roads and bridges to ensure they remain in good condition and last as long as possible.

With two of the top projects located on Interstate 15, UDOT recommends motorists along the Wasatch Front rethink how they commute to reduce delays by carpooling, using transit, adjusting work schedules to leave earlier or stay later, or telecommuting.

The following is a list of the top 15 projects statewide in 2015:

1. I-15 The Point (Project Value $252 million)
Construction starts March 2015; scheduled completion fall 2016

UDOT’s largest project will widen I-15 to six lanes in each direction between 12300 South in Draper and state Route 92 in Lehi. The project will also reconstruct the interchange at 14600 South. Four lanes in each direction will remain open during daytime hours, but motorists should plan for delays due to lane shifts and other activities.

2. I-15 South Davis (Project Value $126.9 million)
Under construction; scheduled completion fall 2015

Last year’s largest construction project is scheduled for completion this year. Crews continue work to add Express Lanes on I-15 from North Salt Lake to Farmington. Work is also underway to reconstruct interchanges at 2600 South and 500 South in Bountiful as well as bridges at 1500 South and 400 North. Drivers can expect lane shifts as well as nighttime lane restrictions and surface street closures during construction.

SouthDavisConstruction

3. I-80, Silver Creek to Wanship (Project Value $43 million)
Construction resumes in April; scheduled completion fall 2015

Work will resume this spring to complete the reconstruction of eight miles of I-80 with new concrete pavement between US-40 and Wanship. In addition, two bridges over I-80 are scheduled to be reconstructed this summer. Long-term lane restrictions will last from April through the fall with a small number of overnight freeway closures to accommodate bridge work.

i-80 Silver Creek to Wanship

4. I-15 Beaver Climbing Lanes (Project Value $44 million)
Construction starts March 2015; scheduled completion November 2015

I-15 is being widened in two locations in central and southern Utah to add climbing lanes to enhance safety. Lane restrictions will be in place through much of the summer to allow crews to construct these new lanes. Motorists should plan ahead and allow extra travel time when traveling to and from St. George or Las Vegas.

Beaver Climbing lanes

5. SR-36 Reconstruction (Project Value $25.6 million)
Construction starts spring 2015; scheduled completion fall 2015

A 10-mile stretch of state Route 36 in Tooele County is being reconstructed with new pavement, curb/gutter/sidewalk, and drainage improvements. Construction is scheduled to begin as early as April, and will continue for several months. Drivers will need to watch for traffic shifts and various restrictions to accommodate the work.

SR 36 Tooele

6. I-15 Hill Field Road interchange and Thru-Turn Intersections (Project Value $28 million)
Construction starts spring 2015; scheduled completion fall 2016

The interchange at I-15 and Hill Field Road is being converted to a single-point urban interchange to improve traffic flow and reduce congestion in the area. This project will also construct new Thru-Turn Intersections on Hill Field Road on each side of I-15. Construction is scheduled to begin this spring and continue through 2016. Drivers should plan ahead for lane restrictions and traffic delays throughout construction.

7. Bangerter/Redwood Interchange (Project Value $42 million)
Under construction; scheduled completion July 2015

Crews are completing the new interchange at Bangerter Highway and Redwood Road. Temporary traffic patterns in the area will continue through the summer. When complete, the new freeway-style interchange will be similar to the one constructed at Bangerter Highway and 7800 South.

RedwoodBangerter

8. I-215, 300 East to Redwood Road (Project Value $14 million)
Construction starts July 2015; scheduled completion October 2015

This heavily-traveled section of I-215 is being reconstructed this year. Crews will be removing the top layer of asphalt and replacing it with new pavement, as well as installing drainage improvements. Motorists should plan for lane restrictions and moderate traffic delays.

9. US-40, SR-208 to Duchesne (Project Value $14.6 million)
Construction starts spring 2015; scheduled completion August 2015

UDOT will be removing the top layer of asphalt and repaving 18 miles of US-40 in Duchesne County. This project will prolong the life of the road and provide a smoother ride for drivers. Lane restrictions and minor traffic delays are possible through the summer.

US 40 Duchesne

10. SR-108, 2000 West in Roy/Ogden (Project Value $16.9 million)
Under construction; scheduled completion summer 2015 

A 4.5-mile section of state Route 108 in Davis and Weber counties is being widened and reconstructed. One lane in each direction will be added, as well as curb, gutter and sidewalk. Motorists should plan ahead for lane restrictions and temporary access restrictions at intersections.

SR 108 Weber County

11. Provo Westside Connector/Vineyard Connector (Project Value $21.1/$13.7 million)
Under construction; scheduled completion spring 2016

Two new arterial roads are being constructed to serve the fast-growing areas of Provo and Vineyard in Utah County. Construction has already begun on these roads, and motorists using nearby or connecting streets should watch for trucks and other equipment.

ProvoWestside

12. U.S. 89/State Street, Sandy and Draper (Project Value $2.7 million)
Construction starts summer 2015; scheduled completion fall 2015

Two sections of State Street – from 8000 South to 9000 South, and from 11400 South to 11800 South – will be repaved this summer. Work will primarily take place during nighttime hours, and motorists should expect lane restrictions and business access restrictions during this time.

US 89 Sandy:Draper State Street

13. U.S. 89/Harrison Boulevard intersection (Project Value $6.3 million)
Construction starts May 2015; scheduled completion September 2015

UDOT will realign the intersection of US-89 with Harrison Boulevard to improve traffic flow and will install additional safety improvements in the area. U.S. -89 will also be widened near the intersection. Occasional lane closures will be necessary to complete the work, and motorists should expect additional congestion due to construction.

14. SR-7, Warner Valley to Washington Dam Road (Project Value $21 million)
Under construction; scheduled completion December 2015

Construction continues to extend state Route 7 (Southern Parkway) near the St. George Airport. This extension of the new highway will help improve travel between the new airport and area recreation sites including Zion National Park and Sand Hollow Reservoir.

Southern Parkway

15. Antelope Drive, 2200 West to University Park Boulevard (Project Value $8 million)
Under construction; scheduled completion May 2015

Antelope Drive is being widened near the I-15 interchange to improve traffic flow and enhance safety in the area. Additional turn lanes are being constructed near the entrance to Davis Hospital and Medical Center. Lane restrictions and occasional delays are expected, but two lanes in each direction will remain open on Antelope Drive at all times.

AntelopeDrive

UDOT wants motorists to be in the know regarding construction projects and traffic delays. The following tools are available to provide information about projects and traffic conditions statewide:

UDOT Traffic App — The UDOT Traffic app delivers traffic info directly to motorists by incorporating the best and most up-to-date information from the UDOT Traffic Operations Center, including real-time traffic conditions, construction alerts, crash information and road weather conditions. The UDOT Traffic app is free and available for download in the Apple App Store and Android Market for tablets and smart phones.

Interactive UDOT Traffic Website — The website, http://udottraffic.utah.gov, features an interactive map identifying the locations of UDOT projects statewide. Additional information is provided for each project, including the construction schedule, expected travel delays and the project benefits. The public can also subscribe to an RSS feed on the site to receive real-time updates for the projects that affect them most.

UDOT social media — UDOT offers an official Twitter feed and Facebook page; UDOT Traffic and its four regions statewide also operate Twitter accounts. Motorists can find a list of these feeds at twitter.com/UtahDOT where they can receive regular updates on road construction and traffic conditions.

RedwoodBangerter
Media Contact:
John Gleason
UDOT Public Information Officer
jgleason@utah.gov
Cell: 801-560-7740

February 26, 2015
For Immediate Release

WHAT: Media availability regarding the release of UDOT’s top 15 road construction projects statewide for the 2015 construction season.

WHO: The following will be available for interviews:

  • Carlos Braceras, UDOT executive director
  • Tim Rose, Point project director
  • John Gleason, UDOT public information officer

WHEN: Friday, Feb. 27 at 11:00 a.m.

VISUALS: Construction equipment and barrels.
B-roll opportunity on I-15 on the Point project
(please wear appropriate shoes and clothing to enter work site if interested).

WHERE: UDOT’s South Valley Maintenance Shed — 244 West 13800 South in Draper

For Jackson Boss, a District Permits Officer for the Utah Department of Transportation’s Region Two, it was just another morning. He ran “blue stakes” tickets, and chose to get some coffee at Sugarhouse Coffee. But what he found there illustrates how he lives the core values of integrity and public responsiveness, on and off the clock.

Jackson Boss

Jackson Boss

As Jackson left the coffee shop, he noticed a wallet in the parking lot, next to his car. He hadn’t noticed it before, and originally wondered if the wallet was a prank. But what he found there wasn’t just a fellow motorist’s ID card. As he looked to see if he could identify the owner, he noticed much more was in her wallet.

“It looked like she had her whole life in there — cash, school ID, important documents,” Boss said. “I’ve lost my fair share of items, and it’s not fun worrying about where you left them or where they went.”

Instead of leaving the wallet at the coffee shop’s lost and found, he chose to bring it to the owner — a Makali’i Brown of Sandy, Utah.

Makali’i described her situation, after posting on Facebook about the event:

“After looking, I was ready to face how much trouble I was in. But I was surprised when my mom handed me the wallet and told me a kind, complete stranger had picked it up and drove all the way from Sugarhouse out of the goodness of his heart. I was surprised that it was completely intact and untampered with.”

Makali'i Brown with a message to the UDOT worker who found her wallet

Makali’i Brown with a message to the UDOT worker who found her wallet

Jackson shrugged off any congratulations when he was told Makali’i wanted to thank him. To him, there was never any doubt what to do.

“I think that you need to be the change you want to see in the world, whether it’s returning a wallet or anything else. ” Boss said.

Thank you to Mikali’i for letting us know about what happened.

The Employee Advisory Council met January 21, 2015. Items that were included in the discussion included:

  • Flexible Schedules
  • Performance Plans
  • Team Building Exercises
  • Employee Opportunities
  • Random Drug Testing for all UDOT Employees
  • Mechanics Salary Increases for ASE Certification
  • Policy Limiting Length of Time for Plowing
  • Reimbursement Amount for CDL Physicals

Notes from the meeting are available below.

EAC January 2015 Summary

Information from previous meetings has also been posted on the blog.

Employee Advisory Council

You’ve used the app. You’ve seen the traffic cameras on TV or online, and you might have even seen the Traffic Operations Center in person. But have you ever wondered what exactly goes into getting the information? We’ll take you on a “ride along” and show you how.

Through the technology and data of the Advanced Traffic Management System (ATMS), UDOT can Keep Utah Moving. Recently, a critical part of the system was updated along the I-15 corridor, as newer controllers were installed and programmed. The controllers gather volume and speed data from passing vehicles. Although no identifying information is collected, it does give a wealth of data on the speed of traffic, the density of traffic, weather conditions, etc.

The replacement process starts when the new lane controllers are programmed with the proper software to collect the data. The controllers run on Linux-based command prompts and also use custom software add-ons. The base software is programmed at the UDOT Traffic Operations Center.

Kent (left) and David (right) are in charge of maintaining and upgrading the ATMS systems along the Wasatch Front.

Kent (left) and David (right) are in charge of maintaining and upgrading the ATMS systems along the Wasatch Front.

Once the controllers are programmed, they are ready to be deployed into the field. The first set to be replaced was along southbound I-15 at 3300 South.

Kent and David working in an ATMS cabinet alongside I

Kent and David working in an ATMS cabinet alongside I-15.

The new controllers are wired in and turned on. They also have to be programmed once they are in the cabinet by using data from a controller at a different location. This process requires time, patience and many command prompts.

atms crew 3

The lane controllers are installed as a pair, in case one fails while in the field. One acts as the primary and one as a secondary. They both have ability to function independently, but also as a pair.

Once the new controllers are field-programmed, they are brought online and tested to make sure that they are working properly. Once they are tested and confirmed to be working, the ATMS crew moves on to calibrate and install the next set of lane controllers. The whole process of removing the old boxes and installing and testing the new ones takes just under an hour per cabinet.

An overhead sensor that collects data from Express Lane users.

An overhead sensor that collects data from Express Lane users.

UDOT also uses in-pavement “pucks” that collect traffic data. All of this information is sent to a nearby traffic cabinet and then to the UDOT Traffic Operations Center. The information is used to create the congestion layers on the UDOT Traffic app and website, so travelers can know about delay and congestion information for their trips.

An in-pavement "puck" that collects speed data from passing vehicles.

An in-pavement “puck” that collects speed data from passing vehicles.

This guest post was written by Adam McMillan, Traffic Operations Center Intern.

TAMPA, Fla. — The American Traffic Safety Services Association has chosen Jed Boal, reporter and anchor for KSL-TV in Salt Lake City, as the winner of the ATSSA National Media Award. This award goes to “A reporter/news organization, blogger or freelancer who has been fair, balanced, and informative in reporting transportation related issues on radio, television, newspaper and the web”.

KSL-TV's Jed Boal (left), and UDOT Public Information Officer John Gleason pose with Boal's plaque.

KSL-TV’s Jed Boal (left), and UDOT Public Information Officer John Gleason pose with Boal’s plaque.

Boal, who has worked for Utah’s NBC station for 16 years, has the tenacity and skepticism that a good reporter needs to “dig deep” and combines that with a skillful blend of transparency, relationship building, and storytelling. He’s always looking at new ways to tell a story and inform the public — whether it’s riding along with an Incident Management Team, purposely depriving himself of sleep to conduct a study for a story, or pulling out rumble strips to help the public see what they do.

“There are very few journalists in the entire country that are more fair, balanced, and informative than Jed Boal of KSL-TV,” UDOT Public Information Officer John Gleason said.  ”Jed is the kind of journalist who turns the stereotype of reporter on it’s head, all while making sure he’s still got the public’s right to know in mind.”

ATSSAaward

The ATSSA chose KSL-TV’s Jed Boal as its recipient of its 2014 National Media Award.

We’re grateful to work with professionals like Jed Boal in the Utah media. It’s obvious Boal not only loves being a community watchdog, but also cares just as much about letting the public know what amazing things UDOT is doing for the state. This attitude makes it very easy for UDOT to get the word out to the public, knowing Jed will give UDOT a fair shake regardless of whether the story is a positive one or a negative one for the department.