“Life-changing” West Davis Highway begins construction
May 25, 2021, 2:34 PM | Updated: 2:35 pm
LAYTON, Utah — With the roar of F-35s flying overhead, state transportation officials and local leaders broke ground on the new West Davis Highway Tuesday morning.
State Senate President Stuart Adams, R-Layton, joked that he ordered the F-35s to go overhead. A fifth generation Layton resident, Adams described the West Davis Highway project as life-changing.
“It will affect our quality of life, and it will affect generations to come,” he said.
West Davis Highway to be finished in 2023
The four-lane, 16 mile highway will go from the I-15/Legacy Highway interchange in Farmington to West Point.
It is expected to be completed in 2023. By 2040, the Utah Department of Transportation projects the highway will reduce congestion on local roads west of I-15 by more than 30%.
Adams talked about how Legacy Parkway improved the commute times and traffic congestion for people in Davis County.
“I remember people calling me in tears, saying I can now get home to my kids’ soccer games, I can get home to my church meetings. My quality of life has changed,” he said. “We can’t go backward to the way it was.”
“Sitting on the freeways stuck in traffic is no fun for any of us. If it takes two hours or an hour to get to Salt Lake when it should take 15 to 30 minutes, that takes time away from our families,” said Rep. Mike Schultz, R-Hooper.
“Big things are difficult to do”
The legislative leaders helped an excavator move the first shovels full of dirt to break ground on a section of the future highway. UDOT Executive Director Carlos Braceras thanked elected officials, the project director, the contractors and others for their help.
“This is big. Big things are difficult to do, but big things happen when good people get together and do the right thing for the right reasons,” he said.
Braceras said this idea began in 2001, and the environmental studies began in 2010. He said experts predict western Davis and Weber County households to experience 65% growth by 2040. That potentially makes the West Davis Highway project a critical need.
“We need to have infrastructure so our communities can grow,” he said.