Transportation Programming

Current Five-Year Program

Projects to improve Arizona’s highway system through expansion, preservation and modernization were formally approved today to move forward as part of the Arizona Department of Transportation’s annual five-year planning process.

Today the State Transportation Board met in Pinetop-Lakeside and voted to adopt the 2016-2020 Five-Year Transportation Facilities Construction Program. The board’s action determines which projects are now programmed in Greater Arizona, the Maricopa County region and the Pima County region. The process to finalize these projects began in March with a call to the public, stakeholders and local governments to comment online or during three public hearings.

“As we work to improve Arizona’s state highway infrastructure, limited transportation funding requires a careful balance of expanding the system where we can, while preserving what we have in place,” said ADOT Director John Halikowski. “ADOT has worked closely with the board over the past few months and followed their guidance to move improvement projects forward that are important to the communities we serve and that fit into ADOT’s long-range transportation plan.”

Halikowski also noted, “The strong message remains that there are many transportation needs throughout Arizona, but not enough funding to meet all those needs. Transportation infrastructure is critical for trade, commerce, job growth and economic development, and it can’t be emphasized enough that we need to invest in transportation now if we want to be economically competitive as a state.”

Much like the current Five-Year Program, the newly adopted 2016-2020 Five-Year Program reflects a major focus on preserving the existing state highway system while moving some high-priority expansion projects forward. ADOT must prioritize projects due to continued low revenue from the gas and vehicle license taxes and from decreased federal funding — all of which support the Five-Year Program. ADOT’s continued focus on preservation allows the department to protect its investment of $19.7 billion in the state highway system. Without a commitment to preservation, it would cost approximately $200 billion to replace the system.

Both the Maricopa and Pima county regions in the two metropolitan areas have independent revenue streams established through voter-approved sales tax increases that allow for more expansion projects to take place and for more transportation funding overall.

The following is a list of major projects for Greater Arizona, the Maricopa Association of Governments (MAG) region and the Pima Association of Governments (PAG) region during the 2016-2020 Five-Year Program. This list provides an overview and does not include all projects in the Five-Year Program.

Greater Arizona
  • State Route 260, Interstate 17 to Thousand Trails: This widening project totals $62 million ($52 million will be allocated in FY 2016 for construction, while $10 million was programmed in FY 2015 for right of way). The project, which is scheduled to begin construction in spring 2016, will upgrade a nine-mile segment of SR 260 from a two-lane roadway to a four-lane, modern divided highway, between Thousand Trails Road and the Interstate 17 junction in Camp Verde, east of Cottonwood. The project is the final step in transforming SR 260 into a continuous four-lane divided highway between the I-17/SR 260 junction and Cottonwood to enhance safety and improve traffic flow for the Greater Verde Valley area.
  • State Route 347 Railroad Overpass: This estimated $55 million bridge project is intended to alleviate traffic backups at the Union Pacific Railroad crossing in Pinal County by replacing the existing at-grade intersection with an overpass on SR 347 so vehicle and train traffic do not impede one another.  SR347 is the only direct route between the city of Maricopa and metro Phoenix. The funding for this project is allocated in phases. ADOT has an agreement with the city of Maricopa to contribute a total of $8 million to this project.

    FY 2016: $5.5 million allocated for right of way
    FY 2017: $7.3 million allocated for right of way
    FY 2020: $36.2 million allocated for construction

    In FY 2015, $6.0 million was allocated for project development.
  • State Route 189, Nogales to Interstate 19: Total project cost is currently estimated at $70 million. ADOT is planning these improvements along SR 189 to ensure international commerce can efficiently and safely travel between Arizona and Mexico at the Mariposa Port of Entry, one of the busiest land ports in the United States. Even though it is one of the shortest highways in the state, SR 189 has a huge impact on trade in this region.

    FY 2016: $2 million allocated for preliminary engineering
    FY 2018: $4 million allocated for design work
    FY 2021: $64 million is anticipated to be available for construction (note that this portion of the project is in the 2021-2025 Development Program)

  • State Route 89, State Route 89A to Deep Well Ranch Road: $15 million allocated in FY 2017 for a corridor widening project that will improve capacity, operations and safety. The roadway will be widened from two lanes to four lanes.
  • US 60, Show Low to 40th Street: $6 million allocated in FY 2018 for this project, which will add turn lanes, widen the roadway and construct intersection improvements.
  • US 93, Cane Springs section: $5 million allocated in FY 2019 for project design work on this widening project that is part of ADOT’s commitment to convert all of US 93 to a modern, four-lane divided highway. FY 2024: $31 million is anticipated to be available for construction (note that this portion of the project is in the 2021-2025 Development Program)
  • Interstate 15, Bridge No. 1: $2.5 million allocated in FY 2017 for design and $33 million allocated in FY 2019 for bridge replacement.

The Five-Year Program serves as a blueprint for future projects and designates how much local, state and federal funding is allocated for those projects. It is updated annually. Each program begins with a long-range visioning process, moves into a more realistic 20-year plan and finally yields each Five-Year Program. The program is developed by working closely with local planning organizations and community leaders to identify ready-to-construct or design projects.

Funding for the Five-Year Program is generated by the users of transportation services, primarily through gasoline and diesel fuel taxes, and the vehicle license tax.