The first continuous flow intersection in Utah County is coming at the intersection of University Parkway and Sandhill Road in Orem.
The conversion requires night time closures from 400 West to the I-15 interchange. Beginning May 2 and lasting through May 21, the road will be closed from 9:00 p.m. to 5:30 a.m.
“We are doing the closures at night to minimize the inconvenience,” said Leigh Dethman, Public Relations Manager for the I-15 Core Project.
Utah has been dealing with road construction for the last 20 months. The University Parkway closure is part of the final push to finish the project.
Janae Duncan is a part-time teacher at BYU who commutes from Salt Lake City. She is ready for the construction to be over.
“I personally find the construction annoying, but I am willing to put up with it if it has good results in the end,” Duncan said. “I am glad they are doing it at night. That seems like a good thing.”
The project takes place in three phases. Phase one includes the beginning of pavement removal and replacement.
“As work progresses, we’ll shift over so people can drive on a smooth surface,” Dethman said. “We’re trying to keep as many lanes open as possible.”
Repaving continues in phase two and will affect motorists who want to turn left onto Sandhill Road. Also, direct access to I-15 from College Drive will not be available during this phase.
The final phase includes closing 400 W to the I-15 interchange for completion of traffic signals, road paving and lane painting.
According to Dethman, the continuous flow conversion will allow traffic to move more smoothly and will make it safer for drivers. The new stop light will create gaps, allowing people to make left turns more easily.
“University Parkway is one of the busiest intersections,” Dethman said. “By building this innovation it will improve traffic East to West and will be 20 percent better.”
To make the transition smooth, UDOT created animations and a special web page to train motorists how to use the new continuous flow intersection.
UDOT also recommends motorists plan ahead by checking road conditions and taking alternate routes.
Provo resident, Mitch Macfarlane uses the University Parkway entrance everyday and says the update is needed.
“I think the closure is a necessary evil,” Macfarlane said. “It’s gotta be done and I’m willing to divert my commute if it means that things will be better in the future, but it’s terribly inconvenient.”
According to Dethman, UDOT is in the final phase of the I-15 Core Project and is on target to finish by the end of the year.