Tag Archives: construction

State Transportation Commission tours UDOT projects in Summit County

PARK CITY — On Thursday, June 25,  the State Transportation Commission toured several areas in Summit County to see current and recent roadway improvement projects in the county.

The Utah Department of Transportation (UDOT) has been working with Summit County, Park City, and Snyderville Basin Parks, Trails and Recreation on improving transportation routes in the area.

“Summit County is a popular destination for recreation enthusiasts year-round,”  says UDOT Region Two Director Nathan Lee.  “Keeping the flow of motorists, cyclists, and wildlife moving through the county efficiently and safely is a top priority for us.”

The commission takes a tour of the recreation/wildlife underpass at US-40 in the Snyderville Basin.

The commission takes a tour of the recreation/wildlife underpass at US-40 in the Snyderville Basin.

In the past five years, UDOT has invested $102 million in roadway improvements in Summit County.  Some of those projects include:

-I-80 from Kimball Junction to SR 224 Study

This study looked at different scenarios to expand the capacity of SR 224 near Kimball Junction to accommodate future traffic and improve mobility.  Three recommendations were made, including a 7-lane section on SR 224, a continuous flow intersection at Olympic Parkway/Newpark Blvd., and a third left turn lane from northbound SR 224 to westbound I-80.  A final recommendation has not been chosen and funding for construction has not been secured.

-Wildlife Underpass Crossing at US 40

Completed in November 2014, this new underpass crossing provides recreational access and connectivity west of US 40 with the Frontage Road east of US 40.  The underpass also enhances safety for drivers and trail users, while at the same time reducing auto-wildlife crashes.

-SR 224 between Richardson Flat and Round Valley Drive

UDOT repaved and widened S.R. 248 to five lanes (two general purpose lanes in each direction with a two-way left turn lane) from Richardson Flat Road to Round Valley Drive. The project also included the installation of bike lanes from Wyatt Earp Way to Richardson Flat Road and intersection improvements at Richardson Flat Road and S.R. 248.  This project was completed in 2013.

The Commission stopped at S.R. 248, east of Comstock Drive to view a pedestrian tunnel near Treasure Mountain Middle School in Park City.

The Commission stopped at S.R. 248, east of Comstock Drive, to view a pedestrian tunnel near Treasure Mountain Middle School in Park City.

-SR 224 between Bear Hollow and I-80

UDOT completed a three-inch repaving on S.R. 224 from Bear Hollow to the I-80 interchange in July 2014.  The project also included new radar signal detection, pedestrian ramp upgrades and a shared shoulder for Park City Transit buses/ bikes on the east side.

Current projects under construction include the following:

-I-80 between Silver Creek and Wanship

This $43 million project replaces asphalt, upgrades drainage systems, and installs overhead variable message signs (VMS) to better communicate road conditions on Interstate 80 between Silver Creek and Wanship.  Construction began in December 2014 and is scheduled for completion in late 2015.

i-80 Bridge Demolition near Wanship We shared with you earlier about the construction going on near Wanship on I-80. Now, we’ve got a video to show how we teamed with Geneva Rock Products to take down the bridge.

Posted by Utah DOT on Wednesday, May 6, 2015

 

-Judd & Hobson Lane Bridges at I-80

This $2.7 million renovation project prolongs the life of the both the Judd and Hobson Lane bridges along Interstate 80 between Coalville and Hoytsville.  Originally built in 1967, the bridges provide connectivity and enhance safety for drivers.  Renovations began in June 2015 and are scheduled for completion in the fall of 2015.

Upcoming projects in Summit County include the following:

-New westbound truck lane on Interstate 80 between Parley’s Summit and Jeremy Ranch

To improve mobility and enhance safety on Interstate 80, UDOT is designing a passing truck lane between Parley’s Summit and Jeremy Ranch.  The $17 million design project will begin in 2017.

-US 40 bridges near Jordanelle Reservoir

This $4.2 million project will preserve seven bridges near the Jordanelle Reservoir, which are frequently used by motorists visiting the area for recreation.  The bridges were originally built over 20 years ago. Bridge preservation work begins in 2016.

For a complete list of current and future projects in Summit County, visit the UDOT Projects page.

This guest post was written by Region Two Communications Manager Agustin Avalos. 

Plan ahead for delays on the July 4 weekend

UDOT engineers advise avoiding travel during heavy traffic times; construction to be suspended on most highway projects

 SALT LAKE CITY – The Utah Department of Transportation (UDOT) advises drivers to plan ahead for travel delays this July 4 weekend by avoiding heavy traffic times if possible. Although work will be suspended and lanes will be open on most Utah highways, existing restrictions will remain in place to protect the work zone and ensure safety on several major projects in Salt Lake, Davis, Utah, and Summit counties.

UDOT traffic engineers anticipate heaviest traffic this weekend on Thursday, July 2, between noon and 7 p.m., with highest overall traffic volumes expected around 3 p.m. A second period of high traffic is also expected from Saturday, July 4, at 10:30 p.m. to Sunday, July 5, at 12:30 a.m.

To help accommodate high traffic levels, UDOT will be adjusting the timing of traffic signals and ramp meters. UDOT is also partnering with Orem and Provo, as well as Brigham Young University, to help manage traffic to and from the Stadium of Fire event. Motorists attending the Stadium of Fire are encouraged to avoid construction on Orem Center Street, and use 800 North or University Parkway as an alternate.

Road construction projects that drivers should be aware of when planning their trips this weekend include:

I-15 at the Point of the Mountain
All four lanes are open in both directions on I-15. However, the northbound lanes have been split into two sections between S.R. 92 and 14600 South. Drivers wanting to exit at 14600 South need to stay to the right through the lane split. Due to narrowed and shifting lanes throughout the construction zone, the speed limit has been reduced to 55 miles per hour.

I-80 in Summit County
I-80 is reduced to one lane in each direction from the U.S. 40 interchange to Wanship in Summit County. All traffic has been shifted to the eastbound lanes, and the speed limit is reduced to 45 miles per hour. In addition, the westbound on- and off-ramps at Exit 150 (Tollgate/Promontory) are closed. To reduce delays, drivers should consider using I-84 through Ogden as an alternate route. These restrictions are scheduled to remain in place through fall 2015 while crews reconstruct the freeway with concrete pavement.

Drivers should remember to stay alert, use caution, and obey posted speed limits when traveling through construction zones in order to ensure safety.

Construction schedules are weather dependent and subject to change. For more information about these and other UDOT projects, visit udottraffic.utah.gov or download the UDOT Traffic app, available for iOS or Android devices.

With lane splits, closures, Utah drivers need to plan ahead

Lane splits at the Point of the Mountain, lane closures in Davis County may delay drivers  

SALT LAKE CITY — The Utah Department of Transportation (UDOT) advises drivers to plan ahead for travel delays on I-15 in Davis and Utah counties beginning as early as Saturday night. Crews will install a new lane split at the Point of the Mountain, and close lanes on I-15 in Davis County to allow concrete to cure.

The following is a brief description of road construction projects that drivers should be aware of this weekend (all schedules subject to change due to weather or equipment issues):

I-15 at the Point of the Mountain

A new lane split is scheduled to be in place on northbound I-15 at the Point of the Mountain starting as early as Sunday morning. The split will divide the northbound lanes into two sections while crews reconstruct the center lanes of the freeway. As part of this split, the two outside lanes will be shifted onto the new permanent pavement for the first time.

All four lanes will continue north on I-15 – however, drivers planning to exit at 14600 South will need to stay right. The lane split will allow UDOT to keep all four lanes open through construction along this busy section of I-15.

Once this split is in place, all four lanes will be reopened at S.R. 92 (currently, one northbound lane is closed at the interchange). To better control traffic merging onto I-15, the ramp meter for the northbound S.R. 92 on-ramp to I-15 will be turned on.

The lane split will work much like it does in Davis County, as shown in the video below.

 

I-15 in Davis County

Southbound I-15 is scheduled to be restricted to three lanes near 400 North in Bountiful for barrier work. Beginning as early as Friday, June 26, at 4 p.m., crews will close the right lane of southbound I-15. This restriction is scheduled to remain in place through Saturday, June 27, at 4 p.m. to allow the concrete to cure.

Northbound I-15 is scheduled to be restricted to three lanes near 2600 South in Bountiful this weekend. Beginning as early as Saturday, June 27, at 6 p.m., crews will close one northbound lane for bridge work. This restriction is scheduled to remain in place through Monday, June 29, at 6 a.m. Drivers should plan ahead for minor delays during this time, and consider using alternate routes such as Legacy Parkway.

Construction schedules are weather-dependent and subject to change. For more information about these and other UDOT projects, visit udottraffic.utah.gov or download the UDOT Traffic app, available for iOS or Android devices.

Layton ThrU Turn, SPUI, set to relieve congestion

LAYTON — The Utah Department of Transportation and Layton City are working together to tailor solutions to meet the city’s unique traffic challenges.

One of the main challenges is near Hill Field Road and the interchange with Interstate 15. Typically, it takes motorists about 10 minutes to go a half-mile from Main Street to the Layton Hills Mall, with cars frequently backing up all the way to the freeway. UDOT and the city are ready to construct solutions in this area in two phases, aimed at improving traffic flow, driver safety, and access to local businesses.

Phase One will have new ThrU Turn intersections built on Hill Field Road at Main Street and at Gordon Avenue (near the Layton Hills Mall). A ThrU Turn intersection improves traffic flow by eliminating left turns at the main intersection. Drivers wishing to turn left continue straight to the intersection, then make a U-turn at a specially designed turnaround. Construction will start on Sunday, June 14, and is schedules for completion in 90 days — in time for Black Friday and other holiday shopping.

Phase Two will construct a Single Point Urban Interchange at the Hill Field Road interchange on I-15. On these interchanges, all traffic from the off- and on-ramps (as well as Hill Field Road) is controlled by a single traffic signal. This design imporves the flow of traffic and enhances safety for drivers. The interchange will be completed during the 2016 construction season.

According to computer data, driving along Hill Field Road will take half as long when construction is complete. In 25 years, that drive time will be 1/4 as long as if the intersection stayed as-is.

The majority of lane closures are scheduled at night, as part of UDOT’s efforts to work as effectively as possible to minimize delays during construction. When complete, drivers will save an average of 5 minutes off their commute.

Residents with questions can meet the contractor on Tuesday, June 16 from 5-7 p.m. at the Layton Hills Mall. Current information will also be posted at the Layton Improved website, and you can call the project hotline at 801.904.9064.

Plan ahead for delays in Davis County

Lane restrictions, freeway closure scheduled for new bridge construction and concrete maintenance

SALT LAKE CITY — The Utah Department of Transportation (UDOT) advises drivers to plan ahead for delays on I-15 in Davis County this weekend. Crews are scheduled to set beams on the new 400 North bridge in Bountiful and complete concrete maintenance on the bridge over the railroad tracks on I-215 in North Salt Lake. Both projects will require significant lane restrictions.

The following is a brief description of road construction projects that drivers should be aware of this weekend (all schedules subject to change due to weather or equipment issues):

I-15 in Davis County

I-15 will be closed in both directions overnight Saturday, June 6, while crews build a new bridge at 400 North in Bountiful.

Southbound I-15 is scheduled to close at 500 West as early as 11 p.m. During this time northbound I-15 will remain open, but will be reduced to one lane. Once the new beams are set over the southbound lanes, crews will reopen one southbound lane and I-15 will be closed at 400 North. All lanes are schedule to reopen by 11 a.m. Sunday.

UDOT recommends Legacy Parkway as an alternate route. 400 North will remain closed at I-15 until project completion later this summer. The new bridge will feature improved sidewalks, wider shoulders and a higher barrier between traffic and pedestrians.

I-215 in North Salt Lake

Drivers should plan ahead for heavy delays near the I-215 ramps on I-15 in North Salt Lake. I-215 has been reduced to one lane in each direction while crews complete concrete maintenance on the bridge over the railroad tracks. This restriction will remain in place 24 hours per day for up to two months. UDOT recommends drivers use Legacy Parkway as an alternate.

Construction schedules are weather dependent and subject to change. For more information about these and other UDOT projects, visit udottraffic.utah.gov or download the UDOT Traffic app, available for iOS or Android devices.

 

New Bangerter Bridge to open May 17

For motorists in the southwest part of the Salt Lake Valley, the long-awaited day is here: The Bangerter Bridge over Redwood Road will be opening to east-west traffic this Sunday afternoon, May 17.

Starting on Saturday at 11 p.m., traffic on Bangerter Highway will be reduced to one lane while crews switch the traffic onto the new bridge, so watch for changing traffic patterns that night. Motorists wanting to access Redwood Road from the highway (and vice versa) will continue to use the temporary road at Marketview Drive.

This graphic shows how traffic will be affected by the opening of the Bangerter bridge at Redwood Road.

This graphic shows how traffic will be affected by the opening of the Bangerter bridge at Redwood Road. Click on the image to increase its size.

City officials in the area will be taking a tour to see the new bridge on Friday, May 15th at 10 a.m.

The community surrounding Bangerter and Redwood Road is continuing to grow at an accelerated pace, and we’re excited about the improvements the project has made to the area. The project will accommodate immediate and long-term traffic demands and increase mobility, thanks to a grade separated single point urban interchange. The SPUI will improve safety for motorists and bikers in the area by reducing the amount of conflict points.

While the opening of the bridge, which is similar to the bridge at Bangerter and 7800 South in West Jordan, is a major milestone in the Redwood and Bangerter project, it is not the end.  Work on Redwood Road, and signing and landscaping the project, will push the actual construction end day to July.

Mtn View Corridor team receives Silver Barrel for $500k recycling decision

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. 

UDOT releases 2015 top 15 construction projects list

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

 

For more information on the Vineyard connector, please e-mail udotregion3@utah.gov or call our region hotline 801-830-9304.

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.

Bridging Borders: UDOT engineer featured in AZDOT video

With hundreds of miles of interstate weaving through Utah, have you ever wondered how UDOT deals with transportation issues where highways and interstates cross state lines? This video, produced by our friends at the Arizona Department of Transportation, shows what happens on a project in the Virgin River Gorge, which Interstate 15 runs through. Our own Dana Meier, a UDOT Program Engineer assigned to Washington County in Southern Utah, is featured in it.

The Gorge is a main thoroughfare for those seeking to get between Salt Lake City and Las Vegas, and is a huge connection point for those moving on to Los Angeles and Phoenix. A shutdown of this 29-mile section of road in Arizona can have wide-reaching effects nationally.

In the video, Region 4’s Meier, a 16-year veteran of the department, explains why interstate collaboration is so important.

“That little stretch of I-15 is a critical link for commerce from the port of Long Beach to the rest of the nation,” Meier said. “Maintaining the continuity and communication is critical for the entire system to function. It doesn’t just affect Utah. It affects Nevada and Arizona. It affects all of us.

At UDOT, collaboration is one of our valued emphasis areas. Teaming with local and interstate partners helps meet local and out-of-town traveler needs by providing a better product, and helps various entities share much-needed knowledge and skill. Collaboration also saves time and taxpayer dollars by avoiding costly arguments, claims and litigation.

 

 

Innovative partnerships prove to be the perfect recipe for Patchwork Parkway

PANGUITCH — In a state where innovation is consistently used to Keep Utah Moving, sometimes innovation alone isn’t enough. Unique partnerships between state agencies can be the perfect additional ingredient to accomplish the improbable.

In rural southern Utah, where equipment and manpower are sometimes as few and far between as the towns in the region, innovation and partnering got a much-needed job done quickly and efficiently, while minimizing the use of taxpayer dollars.

Recently, UDOT’s shed 4469 in Panguitch teamed up with Bryce Canyon National Park to create a shoulder on a seven-mile stretch of Scenic Byway SR-143. This stretch of Utah’s “Patchwork Parkway” was in great need of a shoulder, because a simple task like plowing the road or pulling over created potential safety issues.

The project required tools neither the department nor the national park possessed alone. So to combat this issue, they came together to pool resources and manpower to finish the job in a few days, saving each agency valuable time and money.

“The stars just lined up,” said Panguitch Shed manager Robert Brown. “Down here, we’re all neighbors, and you have to get creative to help each other out and get things done.”

Normally, a similar project requires a team of at least six to eight workers, with three on a shouldering machine alone. But with only two full-time employees at the shed, Brown and his counterpart at Bryce Canyon had to think outside of the box. Here are some of the highlights:

• Bryce Canyon provided side delivery dump trucks that offered a more efficient use of asphalt. Standard machines provide four feet of material, even if only two feet are needed.
• UDOT’s grader was used to accomplish both the grading and compaction tasks, as the shoulder in the area is too steep to use conventional steel drum rollers.
• The asphalt used on the project was recycled and obtained from a pit in nearby Hatch, Utah at nearly one-third of the cost of new asphalt.
• The project was completed in two days, with two UDOT Panguitch Shed employees and two Bryce Canyon employees.
• A pull-behind broom hooked to a pickup truck cleaned the road with two passes.

For Brown, the lesson is simple: when government entities work and plan together, the result can be a win-win for both, as well as the surrounding communities.

“Without the shared resources, we wouldn’t have been able to do the job,” Brown said. “I think this shows that governments need to think outside of the box more to collaborate.”