Federal Highway Administrator Victor Mendez joined Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval for the Aug. 2 opening of the I-580 Freeway Extension Project, marking the completion of the state's plan to build an interstate that connects Reno and Carson City.
"This freeway is just one way we are answering President Obama's call for an America built to last," said U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood. "In building it, we are helping to strengthen Nevada's economy for generations to come by providing people and businesses with a safer, faster way to get where they need to go."
The I-580 project extends from the Mt. Rose Highway to the Bowers Mansion cutoff to connect Reno and Carson City. The new segment covers 8.5 miles, with three travel lanes in each direction for most of its length. The project also included the construction of nine bridges.
"This new freeway will make it easier to access jobs, supporting employment in the area well into the future," said Mendez. "It represents an investment in transportation with long-term benefits for people across the region."
Rapid development in the Reno-Sparks surrounding area, including Truckee Meadows, Pleasant Valley and north Washoe Valley, has increased traffic on existing highways with anticipated growth expected to crowd routes even further. The new freeway will help address the region's growing traffic needs.
The project's total cost is $574.7 million, including $265.3 million in federal-aid dollars.