UPDATE: Traffic is backed up in both directions. Southbound traffic is backed up for at least 2 miles. Northbound traffic is backed up 3 miles and growing — updated at 3:20 p.m.
ST. GEORGE — Motorists traveling on Interstate 15 along the Virgin River Gorge Monday should expect traffic delays due to heavy holiday traffic volume through the Gorge construction zone.
Heavy traffic volume has traffic backed up northbound on I-15 as you enter the Gorge, Arizona Department of Public Safety Highway Patrol Sgt. John Bottoms said.
“Currently traffic is backed up a little over two miles and moving very slowly,” Bottoms said in a text message to St. George News at 1:28 p.m. Monday. “Plan on adding about 30 minutes to your drive.”
Motorists traveling through the area are advised to plan ahead and allow for traffic and construction delays and to drive with extra caution.
Bottoms urges motorists to always stay a safe distance from the vehicle in front of them when driving. Following too closely, particularly in a construction zone, creates an unnecessary safety risk, which oftentimes results in drivers skidding off into the median when the car in front of them stops or slows, he said.
The $27 million rehabilitation of Virgin River Bridge No. 6 began in March 2014 and is anticipated to be completed in 2016. This significant project includes the replacement of the bridge’s superstructure – girders, deck and railings – as well as widening the roadway through the narrow passage of the Gorge.
While one travel lane remains open in each direction, motorists should slow down and drive carefully through work zones and be alert for construction equipment and personnel.
Alternate route and tips for drivers
Those seeking to avoid the construction work in the Virgin River Gorge may take Highway 91 as an alternate route. The highway bypasses the Gorge entirely, intersecting with I-15 at Littlefield, Arizona to the south and connecting to St. George at the north via Santa Clara and Sunset Boulevard. See map included in this article.
- To stay up-to-date with the latest highway conditions around the state, visit the ADOT Traveler Information Center at AZ511.gov or call 511; outside of Arizona, dial 1-888-411-ROAD (7623)
- For more information about this project, visit the website
- ADOT completes series of bridge projects, easing Gorge traffic restrictions
- ADOT begins largest bridge reconstruction project in Virgin River Gorge, Bridge No. 6 on I-15
- ADOT Advisory: Roadwork on bridges continues, motorists reminded to plan for delays
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