Construction on the switchbacks west of the Zion-Mount Carmel Tunnel and the Canyon Junction Bridge inside Zion National Park are expected to cause delays.
The bridge project is scheduled to begin today, and will cause minor traffic delays, according to the National Park Service.
Work on the switchbacks on the Zion-Mount Carmel Highway started Sunday, and will cause delays overnight. Project construction occurs from 8:00 PM MDT to about 6:00 AM MDT. Starting next week visitors should anticipate one-way traffic in this area of the park. Nighttime construction will decrease traffic congestion and reduce the impact on visitors. It’s also more efficient for work crews, according to the National Park Service.
The work is part of an ongoing effort to regularly inspect and maintain the road to increase service life and avoid major rehabilitation needs on the roads in the park
Construction of the 1.1-mile Zion-Mount Carmel Tunnel began in the late 1920s and was completed in 1930.
At the time that the tunnel was dedicated, on July 4, 1930, it was the longest tunnel of its type in the United States. The purpose of building the Zion-Mount Carmel Tunnel (and the Zion-Mount Carmel Highway) was to create direct access to Bryce Canyon and Grand Canyon from Zion National Park. Today the tunnel is basically the same as it was upon its completion over eighty years ago. This preservation project will improve the safety of the bridges and tunnels in Zion National Park.