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South Mountain Freeway Construction
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ADOT moves up another step in South Mountain Freeway construction

(KTAR File Photo)

PHOENIX — Some streets that had belonged to the city of Phoenix will now be considered part of the state highway system as a step in the upcoming construction of the Loop 202 South Mountain Freeway.

The re-designation means that the Arizona Department of Transportation, rather than the city, is now responsible for the maintenance and emergency responses to stretches of Pecos Road, 59th Avenue and various cross streets.

ADOT said the change gave construction crews right of way and will allow them to complete their work “quickly and efficiently.”

Commuters will likely notice little change from the decision, at least until construction begins later this summer.

The South Mountain Freeway has been in the works for decades and has fought off several lawsuits over the past year since it was approved for construction by the federal government.

When the $916 million project opens to traffic in late 2019, it will connect the East and West valleys and give commuters an alternative to taking the Interstate 10 through downtown Phoenix.

The federal government gave ADOT received final clearance in spring 2015 to start the project.

Any roads that do not end up becoming part of the freeway once it is completed will be returned to the care of the city of Phoenix.

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