ADOT tries out a different method for merging

At first, it may feel like you’re cutting in line, but trust us: Once you experience a zipper merge you’ll see that there’s nothing rude about this method designed to minimize traffic congestion…

ADOT is piloting the zipper merge on the I-10 quad projects, east of Tucson between state routes 83 and 90. As you can see in the video above, the merging method is a little different than what you’re probably used to.

It requires drivers to merge later rather than earlier. Once you see the “merge here” and “take turns merging” signs, you’ll cooperate with other drivers to take turns.

“As you oscillate back and forth and you build that momentum, you significantly reduce the length of backup because you’re using both lanes,” Assistant District Engineer for Construction Jeremy Moore explains in the video.

The zipper merge pilot is working well and there’s a possibility that you might see it used on other lane merges throughout the state.

“So far what we’ve seen, it’s been great. The queues have reduced. We’ve gotten fewer complaints,” says ADOT Assistant Director Brent Cain, head of the Transportation Systems Management and Operations Division. “Really what we’d like for the public to take away from this is we’re providing a means to really create a safe environment, a fair environment for those folks to get safely through our construction zone.”