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Las Vegas Super Bowl aims to be the ‘least congested’ traffic-wise

Updated October 23, 2023 - 7:08 pm

Organizers are looking to make the 2024 Super Bowl the least congested in history. To help their efforts, extra resources have been made available for the ongoing $305 million Interstate 15/Tropicana Avenue project.

The Nevada Department of Transportation has made extra money available to go toward workers with project contractor Kiewit Infrastructure West to allow for extra work shifts to speed up work on the Tropicana bridge.

NDOT routinely works with contractors to minimize project delays and maximize benefits to the public, Justin Hopkins, NDOT spokesman said.

“In advance of the Super Bowl, NDOT is actively working with the I-15/Tropicana Ave. Interchange contractor on a revised work plan that will include additional staff support above the current contract requirements,” Hopkins said. “The contractor is developing a project schedule that will ensure completion of the north half of the Tropicana Ave. bridge before the Super Bowl while leaving the south half of the bridge intact until after the Super Bowl.”

The cost of the expedited work plan has not yet been finalized, Hopkins said.

Increasing traffic flow over Tropicana is part of officials’ plans to make transportation around Super Bowl week as smooth as possible.

“One of our goals is to make this Super Bowl the least congested Super Bowl ever,” said Steve Hill, Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority president and CEO. “The fact that the city is so walkable it gives us a real headstart on that. The entire transportation team in the valley is working on this. NDOT has stepped up with this Tropicana/I-15 intersection is being worked on right now and the north half of that is torn out and makes it difficult. It is the gateway to the Super Bowl.”

With the north half of the Tropicana bridge planned to be complete in time for the Super Bowl, scheduled for Feb. 11, that will provide the opportunity to allow more traffic over the bridge than what the constricted road currently can handle. The diverging diamond interchange setup will not be in place during Super Bowl week.

“That work will be paused the week of the Super Bowl, but that intersection will basically be completely open, (and) because the north part will be done, there will be additional capacity that we haven’t even had on the north part of the intersection.”

Construction on improving the south portion of the Tropicana bridge will begin following the conclusion of Super Bowl week, Hill said.

“We’re taking steps like that to make sure that this is the smoothest transportation Super Bowl ever,” Hill said.

Outside of increasing the most important roads to get vehicles to and from Allegiant Stadium on Super Bowl Sunday, the walkability of the Strip is also seen as a plus by the NFL.

As opposed to Arizona, the host state of last year’s Super Bowl where attendees had to go to downtown Phoenix, Scottsdale and Glendale to take in events, the majority of the fan activities and special events in Las Vegas will occur on the Strip.

“This one is special because it is walkable,” said Nicki Ewell, NFL senior director of events. “It’s so accessible. Whether you’re at this amazing suite at the Nobu (Hotel) or you’re at Paris or the Flamingo … It’s accessible to everybody.”

The area around Allegiant Stadium will be transformed into a hype-secure region, as the Super Bowl is a designated SEAR-1 security event by the Department of Homeland Security, or the highest level of security for large-scale events.

“Even when we’re taking over Allegiant Stadium, we start building out, depending on if the Raiders happen to host an AFC Championship or are in the playoffs, we’re usually there for over four weeks building out,” Ewell said. “So the parking lots that you see (today) are not going to be parking lots on game day. They’re going to be pregame hospitality venues, they’re all within a secure perimeter.”

That security perimeter around Allegiant Stadium will be much larger in scale than a typical Raiders game, which will affect surrounding roads.

“So that affects the Hacienda bridge and Russell and Polaris and all those streets around Allegiant. But also portions of the Strip itself,” Ewell said. “It’s non-negotiable when it comes to security, our security perimeter and the barriers that we put out.”

Contact Mick Akers at makers@reviewjournal.com or 702-387-2920. Follow @mickakers on X. Send questions and comments to roadwarrior@reviewjournal.com.

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