Updated June 19, 2020 - 1:51 pm
The planned Interstate 15/Tropicana Avenue interchange project got a $50 million financial boost Thursday.
President Donald Trump tweeted Thursday that the Nevada Department of Transportation would receive $50 million to go toward the $200 million project.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 18, 2020
“I’m proposing a $50M award to @nevadadot from @USDOT to reconstruct the Tropicana Avenue/I-15 interchange,” Trump said in the tweet. “So important for improving and reducing traffic in this booming area!”
NDOT spokesman Tony Illia said the federal funding wasn’t necessarily expected, but was welcomed.
“The grant keeps project progress moving forward,” Illia said.
The project’s scope includes I-15 between Russell and Flamingo roads and Tropicana between Las Vegas Boulevard and Valley View Boulevard. The area serves as a gateway to the Strip, T-Mobile Arena and the nearly complete $2 billion Allegiant Stadium under construction.
Slated to get underway in late 2021, it will be the first major upgrade to the I-15/Tropicana interchange since it was built in the 1960s. It is aimed at improving traffic flow and helping the valley’s large event complexes.
The project calls for the reconstruction of the interchange with a longer and wider overpass over I-15, and the construction of a high-occupancy-vehicle ramp at Harmon Avenue, approximately a half-mile to the north.
The project calls for reconstructing the interchange, giving it a diamond on-ramp and offramp configuration and a flyover at Tropicana. Dean Martin Drive will be reconfigured to go underneath the Tropicana freeway ramps, eliminating a traffic light at the intersection near the In-N-Out restaurant.
Circular roads will be in place to maintain access to the northwest and southwest quadrants.
The sidewalks on Tropicana over I-15 will be widened from 5 to 10 feet, and a new pedestrian walkway will be constructed from the north side of Tropicana down to Frank Sinatra Drive, opening up a new access point to T-Mobile.
Though it will serve as a major traffic component to game and event days at Allegiant Stadium, the interchange project won’t get underway until a year after the 65,000-fan-capacity Raiders stadium project is complete. And with a construction timeline of at least 26 months, it won’t be completed until 2024, according to the department.