Project Neon construction means new detours for highway traffic


Project Neon is getting a little more hectic on Monday with more ramp closures and lane reductions. The Nevada Department of Transportation (NDOT) is deeming the third and final major phase of Project Neon 'The Main Event" because it’s the last and most impactful portion of construction. This means more traffic for drivers.

RELATED | Project Neon 'Main Event' will bring several changes in construction zone

The main event is part of the one-billion-dollar, four-mile-long widening of I-15 from the Spaghetti Bowl to Sahara. It's the most expensive highway project ever in Nevada, and may end up being the biggest headache drivers have experienced.

"It's awful. There's no other way of putting it than it's awful," said local driver Jason Reed, who battles traffic on the interstate.

For the next eight months, the challenge for drivers addicted to the I-15, will be to break the habit.

North-south arterials will be your friend. On the east side, that could be Pecos Road or Eastern Avenue. West of I-15, that could be Martin Luther King Boulevard, Rancho Road, or Jones Boulevard.

The bottom line is--you're going to have to get creative, and patient, because traffic that used to be on I-15 may join you on your alternate route of choice.

Filling up her tank, local driver Theresa Webb told me her I-15 fix.

“I’ve been avoiding it as much as possible,” Webb said.

Making matters worse, the I-15 entrance from Martin Luther King Boulevard is closed.

But what Project Neon taketh away, it giveth back. A new entrance opens tomorrow on Pinto Lane.

The merger is reduced to one lane. Drivers who wish to go to the I-15 southbound should stay to the left of the freeway. If you travel on the right, you'll end up on Martin Luther King Boulevard, not the I-15.

"The Main Event" lasts for eight months, and Carolyn Luksza says: forget it.

“I have to drive from Anthem all the way up to North Las Vegas I said I'm not going to deal with that every day, so I went ahead and retired,” Luksza said.

Road signs will help drivers navigate their way through the changes, but Tony Illia from the Nevada Department of Transportation acknowledges that the construction will catch many people off-guard.

"A lot of motorists take their morning commute, and they're sort of on autopilot because they know where to go and how to get there," said Illia. "But as part of Project Neon, it's ever-changing."

This detour will last until November, and its only one of many changes set to take place as construction of general purpose lanes, on and off ramps, and bridges are constructed.

Illia says the biggest impact this week will take place on I-15 starting Tuesday night.

“I-15 main line reduced to three lanes in each direction between Sahara and D street both ways and will be actually squeezed down to two lanes under the Spaghetti Bowl,” Illia told News 3 Monday.

"The Main Event:" I-15 Southbound Lane Reductions

"The Main Event:" I-15 Northbound Lane Reductions

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