Crews are beginning work along the southern alignment of the future Loop 202 South Mountain Freeway this week by assessing soil conditions and the depth of groundwater in the Phoenix area.
Workers started drilling along the embankment slope along eastbound Interstate 10 from the 59th Avenue onramp to the 51st Avenue offramp. There will be shoulder closures along the eastbound I-10 ramps between 59th and 51st avenues from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. weekdays until the project is complete. Motorists should be on the alert for workers.
Assessing underground conditions helps engineers design the freeway pavement, bridges, walls and drainage structures. The latest work is where the I-10 connecting ramps, frontage roads and retaining walls will be built. Throughout the entire 22-mile-long roadway, workers will be drilling test pits up to 10 feet deep.
Once complete, the South Mountain Freeway, which will run east and west along Pecos Road and north and south near 59th Avenue, will connect with Interstate 10 at each end. It is expected to open by late 2019 and will complete the Loop 101 and Loop 202 system, providing a direct link between the East Valley and West Valley.