Interstate 15 or I -15 is an Interstate Highway in the U.S. state of Nevada. The highway passes through the far south of the state, primarily through the Las Vegas region. The highway runs through deserts and past casinos. Interstate 15 is 199 kilometers long in Nevada.
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Interstate 15 at Las Vegas.
Interstate 15 in California crosses the border at Primm and the first exit leads to Primm, a village made up entirely of casinos, because gambling is legal in Nevada, unlike California. The highway leads north through the Mojave Desert. The next exit is Jean, which consists of 2 huge casinos. They travel further through the desert and arrive in the metropolitan area of Las Vegas. After the first exit to Las Vegas, the road widens to 2×3 lanes. At the airport you cross the Interstate 215, which leads to the southern suburb of Henderson, also to the Hoover Dam and Arizona to the east, and bypasses Reno to the northwest. After this, Interstate 15 has 2×5 lanes. On the east side of the freeway is the famous Las Vegas Strip and large industrial estates to the west. Most of Las Vegas’s well-known landmarks are visible from I-15.
On the north side of Las Vegas, one intersects with Interstate 515, which runs through the eastern and western suburbs. Sunrise Manor is the last suburb before leaving the metropolitan area of Las Vegas. Just north of Vegas, US 93 exits through virtually uninhabited land to the Oregon border at Jackpot, 750 kilometers to the north. The highway passes just north of Lake Mead, a large recreational reservoir, dammed by the Hoover Dam and originating in the Grand Canyon. At Exit 93 one comes closest to Lake Mead. The Valley of Fire is also located here, a desert nature reserve with rock formations. At the height of Mesquite is the border with Arizona and Interstate 15 enters Arizonafurther.
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I-15 near Mesquite.
The first automobile traffic started in 1914 when the Arrowhead Trail auto trail between Los Angeles and Salt Lake City was created. From 1919, this corridor was numbered as State Route 6. In 1926, US 91 was numbered over the route. It was not until 1929 that the entire route was paved (oiled) in Nevada.
Construction of Interstate 15
When I-15 was built through Nevada, Las Vegas was a small town without much meaning. Interstate 15 was built over the route of US 91, which was completed in 1955. In 1960, the first section of I-15 was opened between the California borderand Sloan, on the outskirts of what is now the metropolis of Las Vegas, about 43 kilometers away. In 1963 the highway had been extended north again for about 10 kilometers to the Blue Diamond Road. At the same time, a section about 20 miles south of Glendale was opened. On March 11, 1966, I-15 south of Las Vegas was officially inaugurated. Much of I-15 was completed by 1967, except for a stretch through the Las Vegas area and at Mesquite on the Arizona border . I-15 was completed in 1974 when the final sections opened in North Las Vegas and near the Arizona border. The Mesquite section opened on December 14, 1973, along with the Arizona section. US 91 expired in 1975.
Widenings and reconstructions
In the late 1990s, the Spaghetti Bowl, the interchange between I-15 and I-515 in Downtown Las Vegas, underwent significant renovations to accommodate the region’s rapid growth. When I-15 was built through this area in the early 1970s, the conurbation had approximately 275,000 residents. By 1990 this had grown to 750,000 inhabitants. The reconstruction was completed in 1999. In the mid-2000s, the highway through Las Vegas was also widened to a maximum of 2×6 lanes. In 2010, so-called “express lanes” opened along the Las Vegas Strip, a route with 10 to 12 lanes where the left 2 lanes are separated from other traffic. As a result, through traffic does not suffer from traffic jams to the resorts of the Las Vegas Strip. The highway has been widened by converting the left hard shoulder into lanes.
In 2010, a 9-kilometer widening from US 95 to Craig Road in northern Las Vegas was completed. In 2017-2018, I-15 in northern Las Vegas was further widened from 2×2 to 2×3 lanes, covering an eight-kilometer stretch from Craig Road to Speedway Boulevard. Between 2022 and 2023, an additional 10 miles north of Speedway Boulevard to US 93 has been widened from 2×2 to 2×3 lanes.
Between 2016 and 2019, I-15 was reconstructed and widened at Downtown Las Vegas, which was dubbed “Project Neon.” The project, which spanned 6 kilometers from I-15 and cost approximately $1.8 billion, was divided into 5 phases. In the final image, there will be HOT lanes in the central reservation with separate connections to the underlying road network and the US 95. The original highway, which had 2×5 lanes, handled up to 270,000 vehicles per day. In the future, this is expected to grow to 500,000 vehicles. With the project, the highway has been widened to a maximum cross-section of 22 lanes and a few braids. The large-scale work started in April 2016. The interchange with US 95 was reconstructed until 2018, followed by the widening of I-15 itself in 2018-2019. The first phase was completed on May 20, 2019, with the opening of the HOV lanes. The official inauguration followed on August 8, 2019.
Opening dates and lengths are indicative, there may be a small deviation of 1 year or a few kilometers. Sourced from the Nevada DOT.
|exit 0||Exit 25||40 km||1960|
|Exit 64||Exit 75||19 km||1960|
|Exit 25||Exit 34||14 km||1963|
|Exit 75||Exit 93||29 km||1963|
|Exit 34||Exit 41||11 km||1965|
|Exit 50||Exit 64||23 km||1965|
|Exit 93||exit 112||31 km||1965|
|exit 112||exit 120||13 km||1967|
|Exit 122||state line||1 km||1969|
|Exit 41||Exit 42||2 km||1972|
|exit 46||Exit 50||6 km||1972|
|exit 120||Exit 122||3 km||14-12-1973|
|Exit 42||exit 46||6 km||1974|
Every day, 45,000 vehicles cross the California border, rising to 50,000 between Primm and Las Vegas. The intensities increase rapidly thereafter, from 75,000 to 130,000 vehicles in south Las Vegas, rising to 225,000 vehicles per day north of I-215 at McCarran Airport. The passage along the Las Vegas Strip has 250,000 to 260,000 vehicles per day, the busiest point is at the interchange with I-515 with 276,000 vehicles per day. Northwards this decreases rapidly, to 140,000 vehicles in North Las Vegas and 50,000 vehicles at the northern end of the metropolitan area. This further drops to 25,000 to 30,000 vehicles as far as US 93 north of Las Vegas. This drops to 20,000 vehicles through Mesquite and 26,000 vehicles on the Arizona border.
|Exit 1||Exit 34||2×3||Las Vegas|
|Exit 34||exit 37||2×5||Las Vegas|
|exit 37||Exit 41||2×6||Las Vegas|
|Exit 41||exit 45||2×5||Las Vegas|
|exit 45||exit 48||2×4||Las Vegas|
|exit 48||Exit 54||2×3||Las vegas|
|Exit 54||Exit 123||2×2|