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Ravell Call, Deseret News Archives
The Legacy Parkway in Davis County is seen from the Glover Lane overpass in Farmington, Utah.

FARMINGTON — The effort to create better freeway travel in south Davis County is officially underway.

But motorists will have to deal with the pain of orange barrels and lane restrictions for the foreseeable future before realizing the pleasure of expanded highway driving sometime next year.

On Friday, the Utah Department of Transportation launched its largest highway construction effort of the year. The $117 million South Davis Improvements project will include new express lanes between I-215 and Farmington; replacement of the I-15 bridges at 2600 South, 1500 South, 500 South and 400 North; reconfiguration of the interchanges at 2600 South and 500 South; and active transportation improvements, with better pedestrian and bicycle facilities at 500 South, 400 North and Parrish Lane.

The construction will extend the longest continuous express lanes in the country and is scheduled for completion next year. The final phase of the project will extend into Weber County to Ogden, but that part is still in the planning stages.

“This project will improve our highways and strengthen the economy with improved traffic flow,” said UDOT Executive Director Carlos Braceras. “Most important, it will benefit Utahns and visitors for many years to come.”

To minimize traffic congestion, I-15 will remain open with no restrictions during peak hours. However, UDOT encourages drivers to avoid delays by taking alternate routes, such as Legacy Highway, U.S. 89, SR-106 or Redwood Road.

Additionally, the Utah Transit Authority is providing free seven-day passes for Davis County residents to ride FrontRunner, while supplies last. Residents can register for a free pass at rideuta.com/i15davis.

This summer, UDOT crews will work on more than 175 projects with a combined budget of $800 million. The agency has also begun recommendations for a dozen future projects planned for 2018 at an estimated cost of nearly $350 million, said UDOT deputy director Shane Marshall.

“They are fairly medium-sized projects scattered throughout the state,” he said.

Marshall said the state transportation commission will review the recommendations and render a decision on funding sometime in May.

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