Highway in Arizona

Empty highway in Arizona

(The Center Square) – This month, the Arizona State Transportation Board approved the 2023-2027 Facilities Construction Program, which will use taxpayer funding to expand and improve state highways.

Funding was provided predominantly through statewide fuel taxes alongside vehicle registrations. Maricopa and Pima Counties, in addition to statewide taxes, have provided additional funding for their own transportation projects through county-level taxation.

The planning process sought to understand transportation needs from a citizen’s perspective. The program was developed alongside local planning organizations and community leaders.

To reduce passenger and freight traffic, the five-year program devotes $571 million towards projects that widen highways and update interchanges.

Such projects include; 

  • New lanes along Interstate 17 between Anthem Way and Sunset Point starting this year, costing $328 million,
  • Widening of Interstate 10 between Phoenix and Casa Grande, spending $400 million between Loop 202 and Route 387, and $110 million for Gila River bridge replacements. Construction on both projects is targeted for 2023,
  • The first phase of the I-40/US 93 West Kingman interchange.
  • Widening the final two-lane length of Route 260 near Lion Springs at the cost of $109 million. 

The plan will additionally include $2.5 billion in pavement preservation projects across Arizona over five years, upgrading 400 lane miles of pavement. 

About $463 million would be invested in smart technology and adding road shoulders, in order to increase both safety and functionality. One such project includes $68.1 million to expand broadband connectivity along I-40 from Flagstaff to the California state line. 

 The Five-Year Program also follows the Arizona Department Of Transportation’s plan to allocate $360 million per year to preserve bridges and roadways throughout the state highway system. Such projects require repaving and repairing highways and bridges.

For more information, the five-year program can be found at azdot.gov/fiveyearprogram.