North Temple viaduct to close down
The Salt Lake Tribune
By Kathy McKitrick
The North Temple viaduct, a major connector between the core of Utah's capital city and points west, will close Sunday at 6 a.m. for an 18-month demolition and renovation.
This artist's rendering shows a rebuilt North Temple viaduct looking south toward The Gateway with FrontRunner going under the overpass and the airport TRAX line extending across the viaduct. The old viaduct's demolition starts Sunday, with total cost of the remake set at $71 million. Source: Utah Transit Authority
The $71 million rebuild is a key part of Utah Transit Authority's future light-rail TRAX line to Salt Lake City's International Airport. That project is projected to cost $350 million.
The current viaduct stretches from 300 West to 600 West and spans rail yards and tracks that are still in use by Union Pacific and UTA's FrontRunner commuter rail system. So dismantling must occur in segments when areas beneath are not in use. That process should take about eight weeks, said UTA spokesman Gerry Carpenter.
On Sunday, crews will start stripping off the asphalt and removing the light structures, Carpenter said. After that comes removal of the peripheral infrastructure.
"Because it's over an active rail line, they have to cut it out in segments," Carpenter said, noting that cranes will remove the steel and concrete, which will get recycled and reused.
UTA recommends that motorists use 400 South and 600 North as alternate routes to avoid potential delays at railroad crossings.
The new structure will descend at 400 West instead of 300 West, Carpenter said, with a built-in TRAX lane, security lighting, bike and pedestrian paths, and a transfer station where riders can switch between FrontRunner and TRAX.