A second series of closures and lane reductions on Interstate 15 north of the Spaghetti Bowl resulted in some minor congestion issues, but traffic officials were pleased once again by the construction-zone commute.
Tracy Bower, spokeswoman for the Regional Transportation Commission, said there was some bunching of vehicles on the interstate near the Spaghetti Bowl, but no major traffic jams were reported.
To help keep it that way, drivers wanting to avoid the area should consider exiting I-15 earlier and taking surface streets, she said.
The bunching probably is because of the reduction of I-15 from three to two lanes for southbound traffic at Lake Mead Boulevard and northbound traffic at the Spaghetti Bowl.
The morning commute saw drivers slowed to 25 mph at the merge areas.
State Transportation Department officials, who are in charge of the project, were pleased with Monday’s flow.
“We do have some congestion, but it’s a lot better than we thought it would be,” spokesman Bob McKenzie said.
The $240 million project will widen I-15 from six to 10 lanes from the Spaghetti Bowl to Lake Mead Boulevard and from four and five lanes to eight lanes from Lake Mead to Craig Road.
This portion of I-15 was built in the 1960s, and little has been done to improve it since then, though traffic on it has grown to more than 170,000 vehicles a day.
The current project began in November and is expected to be finished by fall 2010.
Officials have asked drivers to consider using surface streets, including Pecos Road and Lamb and Decatur boulevards, for their commutes.
The Freeway and Arterial System of Transportation, or FAST, retimed traffic signals on many of the main north-south roads to compensate for an expected increase in traffic volume.
FAST oversees the timing of traffic lights and monitors traffic flow for the Regional Transportation Commission.
Bower said FAST officials were continuing to watch the surface streets Monday and making traffic signal adjustments as necessary.
In the next few weeks motorists can expect more disruptions.
Washington beneath I-15 will be closed in both directions from 9 p.m. Friday to 5 a.m. July 28 as workers demolish part of the overpass. D Street at I-15 will be closed in both directions from 9 p.m. July 29 to 5 a.m. Aug. 1 for bridge demolition.
Bonanza Road near the Hancock Petroleum area will have lane restrictions in each direction from 5 a.m. Aug. 4 to Aug. 8 and will be closed altogether from 9 p.m. Aug. 8 through Aug. 15.
Contact reporter Francis McCabe at email@example.com or 702-387-2904.