Drivers in the East Valley will be faced with a major freeway closure this weekend as work on the Loop 202 South Mountain Freeway will shut down eastbound I-10 between the US 60 and the Loop 202 San Tan Freeway.
The closure is scheduled to start at 5 a.m. Saturday and reopen at 5 a.m. Monday, according to the Arizona Department of Transportation.
ADOT says anyone who plans to travel in the area around the closure this weekend should “budget extra travel time” as long delays can be expected even on surface streets.
Westbound traffic will not be affected by the closure, the department says.
What is closed this weekend?
- Eastbound I-10 between the US 60 and the Loop 202 San Tan Freeway
- Eastbound on-ramps at Baseline, Guadalupe, Elliot, Warner and Ray roads
- Eastbound on-ramp at Chandler Boulevard
- The ramp from westbound US 60 to eastbound I-10
ADOT says the on-ramp closure at Ray Road and ramps from eastbound I-10 to Loop 202 are expected to begin at 10 p.m. Friday and reopen at 5 a.m. Monday.
Use this alternate route to get around the I-10 closure
According to ADOT, drivers on eastbound I-10 will be directed to eastbound US 60. From there, drivers can take the Loop 101 Price Freeway south and then the Loop 202 San Tan Freeway west to re-enter the I-10.
Surface streets are expected to remain open, but again, ADOT is emphasizing that drivers should expect long delays on those.
And what should drivers do if they’re traveling from western Arizona or California and heading east of Phoenix?
ADOT says those drivers should consider bypassing the Phoenix area by taking State Route 85 south to Interstate 8 and then head east to re-enter I-10 south of Casa Grande.
What are construction crews doing?
This closure is all for the continued work on the new 22-mile South Mountain Freeway, which is scheduled to be completed in 2020. But ADOT says traffic is expected to use the freeway before that.
This weekend, construction crews will be removing and replacing overhead signs with new signs, including ones for the South Mountain Freeway.
The new freeway will complete the Loop 202 and Loop 101 freeway system in the Phoenix area, according to ADOT.
“It will provide a long-planned direct link between the East Valley and West Valley and a much-needed alternative to I-10 through downtown Phoenix,” ADOT says.
More major freeway closures this weekend
- Eastbound I-10 from the I-17 “Stack” interchange to State Route 51. This closure, due to tunnel maintenance, starts at 9 p.m. Friday and reopens at 9 a.m. Saturday.
- Westbound I-10 from the I-17 “split” interchange near 24th Street to Seventh Avenue. This closure begins at 9 p.m. Saturday and reopens at 9 a.m. Sunday.
ADOT says I-17 will be the “primary detour route during these closures.”