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UDOT expects nasty traffic Thursday afternoon before rivalry game

(Credit: Paul Nelson)

UTAH COUNTY – Drivers are being warned.

Traffic on Thursday afternoon between Salt Lake and Provo is expected to be an absolute nightmare thanks to construction, holiday traffic and especially the large amount of people driving to see the game.  Some commuters say their drive is already painful enough, especially approaching the construction in Lehi.

One man says, “It seems like [there is] football traffic, regularly.”

Drivers say the construction zone in Lehi is filled with lane restrictions, lane splits and very curvy lanes.  All that can bring speeds down to a crawl in the afternoons.

“This stretch is almost like a parking lot.  People getting off at the exit… it’s a nightmare,” another driver says.

One woman says, “It has taken me 45 minutes once I got past the Point of the Mountain coming south on I-15 just to get to Clubhouse Drive right next to Thanksgiving Point.”

Engineers with UDOT looked into past rivalry day traffic and they’ve added their average slowdowns due to construction.  They expect there to be at least an hour of delays on the freeway, if not more.  Commuters are frustrated, since they don’t really have a good alternate to get around Lehi.

“You can go up and over Suncrest.  That’s viable, sometimes, until everybody else knows about it,” one driver says.  Another adds, “You could take the back frontage road, but, everybody’s doing that now.”

Even when you make it into Provo, UDOT is warning people about construction on 500 West and Bulldog Boulevard.  They recommend people use Center Street or University Parkway in Orem.

Utah Transit Authority is offering shuttles from their Frontrunner stops in Orem and Provo.  Those shuttles have dedicated lanes and priority at stoplights.