Strengthening a Key International Trade Corridor

Published by The Bee News

March 13, 2022

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Following a multi-year effort, Governor Doug Ducey and the Arizona Department of Transportation celebrated the opening of a new connection on State Route 189 – a key international trade corridor. The two new ramps and multipurpose lanes on the 3.75-mile SR 189 seamlessly link the international port of entry at Mariposa Road with Interstate 19, eliminating the need for commercial trucks to stop multiple times between the international border and the highway.

“Arizona’s strong relationship with Mexico will only grow stronger with the improvement of SR 189,” said Governor Ducey. “The project enhances public safety and commerce, attracting even more trade through our ports in Nogales. Thank you to the Arizona Department of Transportation, the City of Nogales, Santa Cruz County and all of the partners in and around Nogales who helped make this unique project possible.”

Members of the Governor’s Office, the Arizona Department of Transportation, the City of Nogales, Santa Cruz County and community leaders marked the opening of SR 189 this morning with a tour and ribbon cutting ceremony.

“SR 189 is a critical route for international trade with Mexico, tying directly to a key commerce corridor,” said ADOT Director John Halikowski, who spoke at the opening event. “This project will benefit North American trade and tourism while making Mariposa Road safer for drivers and the community. We also look forward to enhancing the system of ports of entry along our southern border, with upcoming projects in San Luis and Douglas.”

The Mariposa Port of Entry is among the busiest in the United States and is a significant gateway for commerce.

Close to 370,000 northbound trucks crossed the border at Nogales in 2021, carrying nearly $30 billion in goods, including much of the winter produce consumed in the U.S.

The project started construction in May 2020 – two years earlier than planned following a $25 million appropriation by the state of Arizona as well as a highly competitive $25 million federal Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) grant. The funds enabled ADOT to build the entire project at once, rather than in two phases.

The opening event also honored the sacrifice of Nogales Police Officer Jeremy Brinton, who died after being struck by a car while ensuring the safety of those working on the project. The Governor’s Senior Advisor for Regional and International Affairs Juan Ciscomani presented the family of Officer Brinton with a commendation, noting his bravery and ultimate sacrifice.

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