CASPER, Wyo. — The Wyoming Department of Transportation will be hosting a ribbon-cutting ceremony in Laramie on Wednesday, Sept. 20 to celebrate the completion of the Interstate 80 Winter Freight/BUILD project.

The ceremony will take place at 10 a.m. at the Quealy Dome truck parking lot at mile marker 290 on I-80.

The purpose of the project is to provide safe areas for commercial drivers to rest or wait out winter storms and closures, according to a press release. The project also includes added truck passing lanes to increase motorist safety and improve traffic flow on steep inclines.

New truck parking from the project is focused on I-80, specifically at Quealy Dome at mile marker 290 and Fort Steele Rest Area at mile marker 228, totaling to nearly 200 spaces. The truck climbing lanes are located at Halleck Ridge between mile markers 250.5 and 252.5 in the eastbound lanes and at Cooper Cove between mile markers 279.5 and 281.5 in the westbound lanes, the release states.

Other features included in this project are 12 miles of wildlife fencing near Halleck Ridge, more than 6 miles of pavement preservation overlay and a new salt/sand storage building at Quealy Dome.

WYDOT applied for and received a federal BUILD grant for $20 million in 2018. The total project budget was $34 million, which included a state match. Simon Contractors was awarded the bid in 2020, and began work that fall, the release states.

The completion date for the project is fall 2023.