SANDY — City officials have secured $21 million in federal funds to rebuild 1300 East between 7800 South and 10600 South.

The project will repave and widen the street in addition to adding a bike lane, a jogging path, new street lights and a landscaped median.

Aging wooden fences and rock sound barriers will also be replaced with cobblestone walls in many locations.

Rep. Jim Matheson, D-Utah, who secured the lion's share of the funding, said the city's integrated transportation system is a microcosm for the rest of the Wasatch Front.

"They ask for legitimate, really good projects that make a difference to our community," the congressman said of Sandy's leaders. "When this project's done it's really just going to be a great asset to the community."

Over the past decade, Sandy has received $200 million in federal funds, said Mayor Tom Dolan. The 1300 East project follows ongoing work on 700 East and the widening of 9000 South and improvements to Highland Drive.

"We believe this is the finest transportation system in Salt Lake County," Dolan said.

The improved access management planned for 1300 East could increase the road's capacity by 23 percent to 45 percent, according to a study by the Utah Department of Transportation. Travel time could be reduced by 40-60 percent.

The changes, particularly the new medians, are also expected to reduce the crash rate by as much as 50 percent.

Between 2001 and 2005, the street saw 1,656 collisions — more than one each day. Most were related to left-hand turns, said city engineer Mike Gladbach.

When the project is complete, drivers will only be able to turn left at intersections, he explained.

"A lot of this is about safety," he said.

When Sandy's contributions are added, the project's funding reaches about $24.5 million. If the city is able to raise about $6 million more, the project could extend the improvements on 1300 East to 12000 South.

Work will begin on the outer edges of the street and work toward the center, Gladbach said. The thoroughfare is expected to remain open throughout construction.


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