“The entire I-10 corridor is over 2,400 miles with approximately 700 miles traversing through urban areas. Currently, the average daily traffic throughout the entire corridor is over 41,000 with a maximum over 300,000. Average daily truck traffic is over 8,000 with a maximum over 55,000. Among the 700 mile urban segments, over 53 percent are currently under heavy congestion.
“Without any further improvement to the corridor, the projected 2035 average daily traffic will be over 85,000 which includes over 20,000 trucks. By 2035, 96 percent of urban segments will be under heavy congestion. Congestion for non-urban segments will increase from the current 4 percent to over 45 percent. “
—US Department of Transportation, “Corridors of the Future Fact Sheet”
Corridors of the Future Grant
Application submitted by the National I-10 Freight Corridor Coalition (including California, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and Florida). Funding allocated for:
• $4 million in Interstate Maintenance Discretionary (IMD) funds related to the widening of I-10 in Arizona from I-8 to the Gila River Indian Community.
• $4.6 million under the Delta Regional Transportation Development Program for the widening of I-10 in Louisiana from I-12 to LA 3246.
Other project goals include: “establishing a template Intelligent Transportation System architecture as a first step in solving the congestion issues along the 2,600-mile corridor. Other options noted in the application for addressing growth in congestion and need for capacity along the corridor include widening, truck/auto separation, multi-modal rail corridor, waterway corridor, urban truck bypass, and truck productivity.This application focuses on various bottlenecks along the I-10 corridor and includes operational (ITS) and infrastructure improvements to create efficient coast-to-coast movement. Included among the proposed improvements are urban bypass around El Paso and Phoenix and truck/auto separation in the Los Angeles, Phoenix/Tucson, Houston, and Gulf Coast areas.
“Most of these projects are still conceptual. The vast majority of what is proposed consists of operational improvements.”
In late 2006, a Phoenix/Tucson I-10 bypass was proposed by a member of the Arizona State Transportation Board. The proposed bypass would allow trucks and other traffic to avoid the Phoenix and Tucson metro areas. Such a highway would inevitably destroy sensitive wildlife habitat, degrade the character of rural communities and pave the way for sprawl in relatively undisturbed areas—all for the benefit of an unsustainable globalized economy that does not serve the people of Arizona.
On March 21, 2008, the transportation board unanimously voted to proceed with a full study into the feasibility of the plan.
I-10 Bypass Info (comprehensive web site)
“Public Disrupts Meeting on I-10 Bypass” (another article here)
“Panel drops bypass plans in San Pedro; Leaves two I-10 route options on East, West”
“Ignoring Wide Opposition, State Transportation Board Moves to Study Options for I-10 Bypass”