Wasatch Constructors, the I-15 reconstruction contractor, typically shuts down all activity on big holiday weekends.
Unfortunately for motorists heading into and out of Salt Lake City for the LDS Church's 168th Semiannual General Conference, this weekend doesn't qualify.Conferencegoers will have to put up with freeway closures and detours just like on any other "normal" weekend since the massive project began.
Carol Provenzano, director of communications for Wasatch, said crews particularly need to keep on pace with their work at 600 North. The northbound offramp at 600 North is open, but the other three ramps are scheduled to reopen in late October, and workers can't afford to miss a shift.
General conference sessions begin at 10 a.m. Saturday and Sunday, two hours after the overnight freeway closures are to end. But Saturday night's general priesthood meeting will end about 8 p.m., the same time the downtown freeway sections - both northbound and southbound - will close.
"We really want to be sure to get that work done," Provenzano said of the 600 North interchange rebuild. "Because the detours are so clean, we don't think travelers . . . will have any trouble getting downtown."
Here is the I-15 work that may affect conferencegoers:
- Southbound I-15, between 1000 North and 500 South, will be closed from 10 p.m. Friday until 8 a.m. Saturday and from 8 p.m. Saturday until 8 a.m. Sunday.
- Northbound I-15, between 900 South and 1000 North, will be closed from 10 p.m. Friday until 8 a.m. Saturday and from 8 p.m. Saturday until 8 a.m. Sunday.
- Northbound I-15, between 9000 South and 5300 South, will be closed from 10 p.m. Friday until 8 a.m. Saturday.
There is good news on the traffic front. Tuesday at noon, the Utah Transit Authority re-opened all four lanes of traffic on South Temple between Main Street and West Temple, the block-long stretch south of Temple Square.
The only downtown intersection that remains closed because of UTA's light rail construction is at 200 West and South Temple. UTA plans to reopen the rest of South Temple, between 400 West and West Temple, by Nov. 15.
The only Main Street block still under construction is between 500 South and 600 South. That work should be completed by Nov. 1, according to Norm Holt, UTA's resident engineer for the central business district.
The work on South Temple adjacent to Temple Square was completed on time, Holt noted.