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I-15: Back to near-normal next month

Little by little, Interstate 15 is getting back to the way it used to be.

Construction crews are continuing to work in four different locations on four different projects for four different reasons. But by the end of October, everything on Southern Nevada’s most important highway should nearly be back to normal.

Nevada Transportation Department officials said Tuesday that crews are continuing to repair the highway 60 miles northeast of Las Vegas, damaged Saturday by flooding that briefly closed I-15, state Route 169 near Logandale and state Route 170 near Bunkerville. The three highways reopened to traffic shortly after flood debris was removed from road surfaces.

The department on Monday approved an emergency contract for repairs for slope erosion and other flash flood-related roadside damage at the location just south of Mesquite.

Under the emergency repair contract, Las Vegas Paving will deliver more than 60,000 cubic yards of fill material to shore up the eroded roadside and replace damaged pipes, guard rail and fencing near mileposts 111 and 112 in the $1.4 million project.

Las Vegas Paving moved about 3,000 dump truck loads of dirt — 500 more than had to be moved on a similar flood-damage project 10 miles south of there.

The contractor also won the emergency contract bid after the Sept. 8 flood near Moapa that closed the highway for nearly a week.

Department spokeswoman Meg Ragonese said the flood repair phase of the earlier incident is nearly complete and crews have gone back to the original contract, repaving and smoothing a 26-mile stretch of I-15 and installing a new truck lane on the northbound side.

Ragonese said that at both the flood damage site near Bunkerville and the repaving project near Logandale, there are two southbound lanes and one northbound lane open to traffic and speed limits are restricted to 55 mph.

Meanwhile, two urban construction projects on I-15 are nearing completion, but there are still more closures and restrictions ahead.

I-15’s Cheyenne Avenue exit, a busy outlet for traffic going to North Las Vegas’ warehousing and industrial area and for students attending the College of Southern Nevada’s Cheyenne campus, will close over the weekend for repaving. All ramps to and from Cheyenne and the freeway overpass will close from 9 p.m. Friday through 5 a.m. Monday.

The intersection also was closed last weekend and some of the lanes, ramps and intersections were partially closed through the week in preparation for a paving project.

The Cheyenne repairs are part of a three-exit paving contract that began in late August with work at I-15’s Tropicana Avenue and Flamingo Road exits and onramps. Those exits were completed in September.

Motorists also got one of their I-15 onramps back on Tuesday.

The D Street entrance to the southbound I-15 ramp near Ethel Pearson Park, a part of the project to reconnect West Las Vegas with downtown via F Street, opened as planned Tuesday morning.

The $13.6 million F Street Connection Project will continue through early December, but it won’t affect freeway traffic.

The project included reconstructing bridges to accommodate traffic beneath I-15.

Contact Richard N. Velotta at rvelotta@reviewjournal.com or 702-477-3893. Find him on Twitter: @RickVelotta.

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