News Ticker

$215M Improvements on S.R. 189 Needed from Mariposa POE to I-19

By Eric Jay Toll for Arizona Builder’s Exchange

Mariposa POEADOT calls “necessary” a $215M project improving S.R. 189 from the Mariposa Port-of-Entry to I-19. The agency is kicking off projects this fall to alleviate some of the congestion on the short stretch of road.

The newly improved—and busiest—border crossing between the U.S. and Mexico handles up to 2,000 trucks per day. The number of trucks is expected to jump to 3,000 per day next year when the port is fully operational. Already the nearly four-mile stretch of S.R. 189 between the border and I-19 is heavily congested. Increasing trucks by another 50 percent will create a greater problem.

Depending on the improvements selected, S.R. 189 could cost as little as $50M or as much as $215M. The variance comes from a simple widening and cutback on intersections along the existing route or building the stretch to parkway or freeway standards. A final decision can’t be made until there’s money in the pot for the road improvements.

There are no funds yet identified for the 3.75 mile project. ADOT is looking towards federal, state and P3 (public-private partnerships) as possible sources for the logistics effort.

Last week ADOT started a $1.5M intelligent traffic signal installation interconnecting signals via microwave. The ITS system links signals to real time traffic flow. Traffic light timing varies with actual traffic volume and speed approaching intersections. The continuous adaptation will help traffic flow more smoothly.

At the intersection of Mariposa Road (S.R. 189) and I-19, additional left turn lanes are being added on the departure side of the intersection. The work on this project is to be completed by the end of 2013.