By Bill Van Nimwegen
Those who have recently taken a drive up Apache Trail on their way to the lakes, restaurants, roadside attractions or parks, have seen the extensive construction underway at the road’s intersection with Superstition Boulevard.
Passing through the construction zone without delays has been relatively smooth, but soon that will change.
Begininning July 9—and expected to last until August 9—the roadway will be closed in the area and a detour will be necessary. Arizona Department of Transportaion (ADOT) says detours will be clearly marked and that access to local properties will be maintained throughout construction, but traffic may be restricted.
Also known as State Route 88 (SR88), the highway has been getting a lot of attention from ADOT since last November. A drive through these Tonto National Forest lands is one of the state’s most scenic (some say most treacherous) trips one can take.
Since last Fall, ADOT has been making enhancements to safety on 17 miles of the roadway 3 miles east of Apache Junction and 7 miles east of Tortilla Flat (milepost 203 to 220). ADOT announced last week that the road will be closed in both directions near Tortilla Flat from 6 a.m. to noon on Tuesday, June 12 and Wednesday, June 13 for rock removal.
Closer to home, ADOT has long had plans to install a roundabout at the existing intersection of SR88 and Superstition Boulevard in Apache Junction. According to ADOT’s online overview of the project, the work planned includes repaving the intersection at Idaho Road. “The new roundabout will improve drivers’ lines-of-sight for traffic merging onto and off of the highway and increase safety,” said ADOT. “Construction also includes drainage improvements and new turnouts. The project is scheduled for completion in fall, 2018.” ADOT offers email notifications of traffic alerts if you subscribe at https://public.govdelivery.com/accounts/AZDOT/subscriber/new.