Traffic stalled as ADOT paving project begins on State Route 179 (with video)
VILLAGE OF OAK CREEK -- Paving began on State Route 179 Monday in the shadow of Bell Rock, as pilot trucks shuttled vehicles heading to Sedona down the VOC-bound lanes.
Motorists heading to Sedona were stopped near the Circle K and had to wait for a pilot vehicle to shuttle groups of vehicles waiting on SR179 in the VOC.
In the early afternoon, vehicles followed the pilot car across SR179 into the opposite lanes near the Courthouse Butte trail head parking lot.
Traffic in the VOC at one point backed up all the way to the Collective at the opposite end of town toward Interstate 17.
On the Sedona end of SR179, traffic then was backed up near the Poco Diablo Resort where other pilot trucks brought rows of cars toward the VOC from Sedona.
Paving crews were putting down pavement on the Sedona-bound lanes from the Courthouse Butte parking lot to the roundabouts on SR179. The trail head parking lots to these nearby trailheads were closed.
At one point, vehicles were led by a pilot car into a roundabout in reverse, entering at the exit and exiting at the entrance.
The Arizona Department of Transportation advises drivers to plan for long delays.
“Work is scheduled for five consecutive days, during daylight hours (5 a.m. to 7 p.m.) No weekend work is scheduled,” stated ADOT.
This project will apply a chip-seal coat to SR 179 between the Red Rock Ranger Station and the Chapel Road roundabout.
ADOT said speed limits will be reduced and pilot cars will be used.