Slide Fire postpones SR 89A project

Posted: Updated:
By Matthew Seeman By Matthew Seeman
By Matthew Seeman By Matthew Seeman
By Matthew Seeman By Matthew Seeman
By unknown By unknown
By Matthew Seeman By Matthew Seeman

OAK CREEK CANYON, Ariz. -- A $2 million project to upgrade a 3.5-mile stretch of State Route 89A north of Sedona is on hold due to the Slide Fire, according to the Arizona Department of Transportation.

ADOT was scheduled to close the Oak Creek Canyon switchbacks on SR-89A for five weeks starting Tuesday following Memorial Day weekend, but crews were pulled off the project shortly after the Slide Fire started earlier this week.

The wildfire originated about six miles south of the project site in Oak Creek Canyon, near Slide Rock State Park.

SR-89A is closed in both directions between Sedona and Flagstaff due to the fire.

ADOT said that once the blaze is contained and access to the area is allowed, crews will have to conduct a roadway and rockfall assessment before resuming the project.

The agency said it will address any potential environmental issues and work with the U.S. Forest Service.

Work on the switchbacks between Pine Flat Campground and the Oak Creek Vista overlook began April 21. The project includes paving and is being done to improve safety, ADOT said.

ADOT recommends motorists traveling between Sedona and Flagstaff use State Route 179 and Interstate 17 as an alternate route.