Michelle Rindels reports on the political state of plans to improve the interstate link between Phoenix and Las Vegas—the two largest cities in the Southwest.
Both cities boomed after the country’s massive freeway building program of the mid-20th century. The population of Las Vegas is now 40 times larger than it was in 1950, and Phoenix is 13 times larger. The 300-mile corridor of U.S. 93 currently narrows to two lanes and hits stop lights in one town along the way.
Congress recently designated Interstate 11—a critical first step in that will allow builders to tap interstate construction dollars if the project goes ahead. So far, the two states have allotted $2.5 million to study routes and cost. The total cost of the project could run anywhere from $4 billion to $10 billion.