The Arizona state transportation board has awarded an $11.5 million contract to repave a section of interstate highway that most Arizonans will never travel.
I-15 passes through just 29 miles of the extreme northwest corner of Arizona, cut off from the rest of the state by the Grand Canyon. But the rugged terrain and the frequent criss-crossing of the Virgin River made it the nation’s most expensive stretch of highway per mile to build.
Continued maintenance is likewise pricey. Last year Arizona caused an uproar in Utah and Nevada when it considered charging a toll to pass through the Virgin River Gorge.
After allocating over $15 million in the last decade to I-15 maintenance, Arizona has now ponied up $11.5 million to repave the stretch.