WEST HAVEN -- After nearly a year of heavy lifting, the extension of Hinckley Drive opened Monday for motorists.
With the road open, work on the $20.7 million project is considered substantially complete. The project extends Hinckley Drive nearly a mile from its previous ending point at 1900 West to a new connection at 3600 South Midland Drive.
Over the next few weeks, Utah Department of Transportation Region One spokesman Vic Saunders said, crews will complete "punch list" items and shoulder work on the new alignment, which provides increased mobility and connectivity for motorists in western Weber County with the Interstate 15/Interstate 84 corridor.
"There are some minor things that need to be completed still, but the road is open for people to use," Saunders said. "And we think motorists are going to benefit."
Although the extension is now open to traffic, occasional lane closures may be required to complete remaining tasks.
Motorists are encouraged to observe posted speed limits, watch for closed or restricted lanes ahead, and look for workers or equipment operation near open lanes of traffic.
During construction, UDOT crews placed massive steel girders on the new bridge for the extension over the Union Pacific and FrontRunner rail corridor in Roy and West Haven.
The bridge is one of the largest noninterstate structures ever built in Utah.
Crews used heavy-lift cranes to place the 301-foot-long steel span beams, each 13 feet tall, along with other material necessary for the bridge.
Now that the project is finished, it connects to Midland Drive near 3600 South. Midland eventually turns into 2000 West and connects to Syracuse Road near Constitution Park.
The project has been in UDOT's plans since 2001, when a federal environmental assessment was planned and conducted to obtain public input.
That original assessment was completed in 2002. Since then, UDOT has conducted a supplemental assessment to determine the potential impacts of the preferred alignment and, in 2008, held additional public meetings to obtain input on the proposed changes.
Construction on the extension began in fall 2009, more than eight years after the project was first proposed.