PROVO -- The stretch of 1860 South between the Interstate 15 interchange and State Street has been a sort of speed trap for drivers since it was open with a speed limit of 35 mph. On Wednesday Mayor John Curtis fulfilled one of his dreams and helped bolt the new 45 mph sign in the ground.
"This is something I have been working on for three years," Curtis said. "I am going to be the one to put the sign in place."
Curtis said he had noticed that the road was used kind of as a speed trap and that police officers used to sit there waiting for drivers. He said he got them out of there as soon as he could after he became mayor.
City engineer Dave Graves said the process started after the mayor came into office and asked what could be done. The biggest issue was finding a funding strain to bring the road into safety compliance.
"The safety improvements have been brought up to speed and the work was done as of December," Graves said. "Warning signs went up as well Tuesday and Wednesday."
The biggest part of the improvements were putting up the guard railings all along the road. According to Graves the cost of the project was just less than $300,000.
"The money came from a collection of places -- unused funds from capital projects that came in under budget and other sources like the pipeline project," Graves said.
Commuters along the road have pushed the speed limit as much as they could, Graves noted. "The philosophy is people drive a reasonable speed, it just may not be the posted speed."
He added, "The lower speed may have kept some commuters off the road."
Graves also noted that the road continues to be used more and more. With the new speed limit he anticipates it will become a major commuter connector. The road is just north of the Mountain Vista Industrial Park.