Interstate 15 or I -15 is an Interstate Highway in the U.S. state of Utah. The highway forms the north-south route of the state and runs from St. George on the Arizona border in the south through the Salt Lake City region to Portage on the border with Idaho in the north. A fairly long stretch of 64 kilometers in length is double-numbered with Interstate 84between Ogden and Tremonton. The highway also runs near several national parks, the Great Salt Lake and also close to the Wasatch Range east of Salt Lake City. Between Spanish Fork and Brigham City, a 160-mile stretch of road runs through urbanized areas. The stretch from I-15 in Utah is 401 miles or 645 kilometers long.
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I-15 in southern Utah.
At St. George, Interstate 15 in Arizona crosses the border with Utah. St. George is a fast-growing city, the largest between Las Vegas and the Salt Lake City region. The landscape still consists of mountains and desert and at Toquerville there is a turnoff to the adjacent Zion National Park. Along the way you can see many buttes and mesas, small and large plateaus that abruptly end in precipices. The next bigger city is Cedar City. The highway runs through a spectacular valley here. To the west there is really nothing, only unpopulated mountain areas and deserts. To the east is Bryce Canyon National Park and the scenic areas north of the Grand Canyon and Glen Canyon. To the east is also the Dixie National Forest, a large forest area with mountains reaching up to 3,700 meters.
At the hamlet of Cove Fort, Interstate 70 turns east and continues through the Rocky Mountains to Denver, 800 kilometers to the east. The highway here is known as the Veterans Memorial Highway. One sometimes drives through small irrigated agricultural areas, in this otherwise very sparsely populated area. The highway runs parallel to Fishlake National Forest to the east and the Silver Desert to the west. At Holden, US 50 turns west to Delta and Nevadathrough the vast deserts. Here, US 50 is double-numbered for a bit with Interstate 15, which exits at Scipio back to I-70, forming a shortcut for traffic from I-70 heading north. The next slightly larger town is Nephi. From here one can enter the Great Salt Lake Desert, a very remote desert area. The Dugway military test site is also located here.
The highway then enters the urbanized region of the Wasatch Front, a suburban area around the cities of Spanish Fork, Provo and Orem, located between the fairly large Utah Lake and the Wasatch Range. The entire eastern shore of Lake Utah is highly urbanized with nearly half a million residents. The highway is also a lot wider here and has 2×4 to 2×6 lanes. Provo’s metropolitan area merges almost directly into that of Salt Lake City.
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Salt Lake City & Northern Utah
I-15 in Salt Lake City.
One passes a small pass height and enters the Salt Lake City metropolitan area. Salt Lake City is sandwiched between the Great Salt Lake, the deserts and the Wasatch Range to the east. The suburbs are quite large and I-15 runs for 60 kilometers through built-up areas. At Murray level, one crosses Interstate 215, Salt Lake City’s half ring road, which is 47 kilometers long. The highway then has 2×5 lanes. The corridor here mainly consists of large industrial areas. At South Salt Lake, a major interchange with Interstate 80 heads east to Evanston and Cheyenne in Wyoming and finally New York City. To the west, theState Route 201, a regional highway to West Valley City. I-15 runs west of downtown Salt Lake City and is briefly double-numbered here with I-80. A few miles away, I-80 turns west to Reno and San Francisco. Salt Lake City itself is about 1,300 meters high, but the mountains east of the city are up to 4100 meters high. From the highway you have a beautiful view of these mountains. Interstate 215 rejoins on the north side of town.
A few more suburbs follow, but the next larger town of Ogden is not far away. The highway here runs some distance from the east bank of the Great Salt Lake. At Ogden, Interstate merges 84, which is double-numbered with I-15 for the next 40 miles. In this area there are more agricultural activities, due to the proximity of the immense lake. One passes by Brigham City, the last larger town in Utah on I-15. At Tremonton, I-84 splits off again to head for Boise in Idaho and Portland in Oregon. At Portage, Interstate 15 continues in Idaho.
I-15 Express lanes
Interstate 15 has the longest continuous express lanes in the United States, spanning 120 kilometers from Spanish Fork to Layton. These express lanes are relatively simple and are actually HOT lanes, with one lane in each direction for which a toll has to be paid. Dynamic toll rates guarantee a free-flow flow at all times.