KOLD INVESTIGATES: Project Ina Road construction pushes forward

KOLD INVESTIGATES: Project Ina Road construction pushes forward

TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) - Closed roads bring daunting detours and daily frustrations as Project Ina construction pushes forward in Tucson.

KOLD News 13 investigated the impact so many are seeing behind the wheel and inside local businesses, as the closure reaches its 6-month mark.

"I'll be glad when it's done," Tucson driver Nancy Clutter said.

"Ultimately, I really think it will be an improvement," said Mark, another Tucson driver. "Each and every one of these intersections will be an improvement."

The work merges some mixed emotions on the roads, but northwest-side businesses are really feeling the effects of the 2-year shutdown.

The Ina Road Interchange Project. (Source: ADOT)

Businesses Are Suffering

Freedom RV Sales Manager James Reffruschinni said the traffic shift means a serious customer cutback for his store, located along the eastbound I-10 frontage road.

"The businesses are suffering," Reffruschinni said.

He said less local business leads to a focused frustration and an extra effort to make ends meet.

"We've been down about 50 percent since the construction on Ina started," he said. "I don't think people realize the frontage road is open. It makes it a little bit harder, we have to work a little it harder for the customers we do get."

Tom Herrmann said the Arizona Department of Transportation makes these problems a priority as they push forward with this long-term process.

Town of Marana's President and CEO of the Chamber of Commerce Ed Stolmaker also talked to KOLD about the project's progress.

"Ina Road is open for business," Stolmaker said. "We encourage people in Marana and across Tucson…to shop at the businesses on Ina road and in the surrounding areas."

"We're trying to do everything we can to support them," Herrmann said. "And let the community know businesses are there and they need their support."

Since the project started in February 2017, crews have laid the foundation for new, wider eastbound Interstate 10 lanes. Work on Ina Road is also underway as portions of a new highway overpass pop up.

For a closer look at Project Ina's progress, go HERE.

For more information on Town of Marana's "Project Ina App" go HERE.

What's Next?

If future work plays out as planned, Herrmann said ADOT is set to switch and start the westbound side of the freeway before 2017 comes to a close.

Herrmann said the progress is putting the project on track to finish on time.

For more information on Town of Marana's efforts to improve traffic flow around the closure, go HERE.

"We're really looking forward to something that will accommodate the traffic flow we need 30 or 40  years in the future," Herrmann said.

Today's challenge will pave its way towards tomorrow's progress.

"It's very difficult to get to us," Reffruschinni said. "They don't realize we're still open, which we still are."

"The project will be fine when it's done," Clutter said. "We just have to get some redirection in Marana."

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