Traveling north out of Mesquite is about to get a lot slower for the next year as the Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT) begins a year-long road construction project on I-15 in the Virgin River Gorge.

The project involves improvements to decks of three bridges through the gorge between St. George, Utah, and Mesquite.

According to ADOT, the project will begin in April with crews resurfacing the decks of Bridge No. 2 and Bridge No. 5, while Bridge No. 4 will get a new deck. Crews will move all traffic to one side of the freeway while working on the other, allowing one travel lane in each direction.

Completing this $6.4 million project, which is scheduled to wrap up in spring 2020, will require reducing the width of travel lanes to 10 feet during construction. All vehicles and loads wider than 10 feet will be required to use a 224-mile detour, with signs directing wide-load traffic to US 93, Nevada State Route 319 and Utah State Route 56 between Las Vegas and Cedar City, Utah.

Along with other improvements ADOT has made to I-15 bridges in recent years, this work will extend the lives of bridges along this busy corridor for commercial and passenger travel.

ADOT continues to upgrade the Virgin River Bridge structures located along Arizona’s 29-mile-long portion of Interstate 15, a heavily traveled commercial and economic corridor which directly connects Nevada and Utah.

In 2016 two projects were completed. Construction was completed on a $2.8 million project, which included bridge rehabilitation on Bridge No. 2, 3 and No. 7.

An extensive rehabilitation project on Virgin River Bridge No. 6 was also completed in 2016. The $27 million project included replacing the bridge’s superstructure (girders, deck and railings), as well as widening the roadway through the narrow passage of the scenic Virgin River Gorge.

Drivers should proceed through the work zone with caution, slow down and watch for construction personnel and equipment.