Interstate 19: Ajo Way Traffic Interchange

The Arizona Department of Transportation and the Federal Highway Administration are working to improve the area near the Interstate 19 / Ajo Way traffic interchange in Tucson. Construction on the Phase II of the project began in July 2018  and will improve traffic efficiency and safety.

Phase II will include the following improvements on I-19 and on Ajo Way west of I-19:

  • Reconstruction and widening of southbound I-19 within the project area
  • Construction of a “braided” ramp alignment with the southbound Ajo Way on-ramp to I-19 passing over the southbound Irvington Road off-ramp from I-19
  • Widening of northbound I-19 to add an auxiliary lane between Irvington Road and Ajo Way
  • Completion of I-19 noise walls south of Michigan Avenue and along the south side of Ajo Way between Kostka Avenue and I-19
  • Completion of drainage improvements and improved drainage collection features
  • Replacement of the Michigan Avenue pedestrian bridge
  • Replacement of the Santa Cruz River Bridge on Ajo Way
  • Construction of bank protection and the new Rodeo Wash outlet into the Santa Cruz River
  • Reconstruction and widening of Ajo Way from Holiday Isle to I-19
  • Applying a rubberized-asphalt pavement overlay on I-19 from Irvington Road to north of Ajo Way

Phase I wrapped up in the spring of 2018. Work included replacement of the previous traffic interchange with a Single-Point Urban Interchange (SPUI) over I-19. The new interchange features a widened Ajo Way bridge over I-19 with a single set of traffic signals controlling traffic entering and exiting the interstate rather than signals at multiple locations.

The SPUI includes new on- and off-ramps to I-19 and noise walls to buffer adjacent residential and commercial areas from construction and from traffic noise generated by the interstate.

Other elements of Phase I include:

  • Widening 500 feet of the southbound Irvington Road off-ramp to provide an additional turn lane and increased capacity to prevent traffic from backing up onto the interstate
  • Widening Ajo Way east of I-19 and upgrading the traffic signal at 16th Avenue
  • Constructing noise walls along both sides of I-19 between Ajo Way and the Michigan Avenue pedestrian bridge to the south
  • Constructing a new drainage basin southeast of the traffic interchange
  • Improving drainage with new collection and discharge features
  • Construction of a Julian Wash outfall channel
  • Constructing a portion of a new drainage culvert for Rodeo Wash that runs beneath Ajo Way, with completion in the second phase of the project
  • Reconstructing Lamar Avenue west of I-19
  • Repaving Elizabeth Drive east of I-19
  • Relocating utilities

Traffic Alerts

Drivers should expect possible delays and consider alternate routes.

Schedules are subject to change based on weather and other unforeseen factors.  Subscribe to receive project updates and traffic alerts by email. For more information, please call the ADOT Bilingual Project Information Line at 855.712.8530 or submit a question or comment by email.  For real-time highway conditions statewide, visit ADOT’s Traveler Information Site at, follow ADOT on Twitter (@ArizonaDOT) or call 511, except while driving