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Faraday’s exit from Apex plans won’t hamper US 93 widening

Updated July 10, 2017 - 4:40 pm

Faraday Future’s decision not to build a factory in North Las Vegas won’t hamper plans to widen U.S. Highway 93 as a way to accommodate other companies that might eventually move to Apex Industrial Park, the Nevada Department of Transportation said Monday.

The NDOT board will decide Aug. 14 whether to award a construction contract for the $70 million Garnet interchange project, which calls for widening U.S. 93 for five miles, from Interstate 15 to Apex Power Parkway, by late 2019.

If the deal is approved, then construction could start as soon as December on a project that could have provided a boost to Faraday’s electric car manufacturing plant.

“Although Faraday may have been a catalyst, these much-needed upgrades would have had a need to be done within the next three to five years, regardless,” NDOT spokesman Tony Illia said.

“Faraday was only one of several potential tenants at the Apex Industrial Park,” Illia said. “As such, we are still moving forward with improvements to the Interstate 15 Garnet interchange, which is currently built to substandard specifications.”

Last week, the NDOT board awarded a $4.3 million contract to WSP USA Inc. to provide administrative, construction and review support for the project.

Preliminary plans released in June 2016 called for building a flyover exit from U.S. 93 to the $1 billion electric vehicle manufacturing plan that was supposed to be built by Faraday Future. NDOT has since revised those plans, and Illia said the costly flyover ramp is no longer included.

Last year, the Regional Transportation Commission of Southern Nevada put out a call for bids on a 4-mile railway spur that would have linked an existing main railroad line to Faraday’s factory by late 2018.

If it was built, then Faraday would have reimbursed the project’s design and construction costs to the RTC. But work never started on the rail spur.

“We were waiting for more progress and development on the site before we awarded anything,” RTC spokeswoman Angela Castro said.

“It’s unfortunate to hear about Faraday, but we remain committed to Apex,” Castro said. “In the event another company moves into Apex and needs rail, then we’re ready to move forward.”

Contact Art Marroquin at amarroquin@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0336. Find @AMarroquin_LV on Twitter.

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