Arizona Governor Doug Ducey has revealed plans to deliver upgrades to the Interstate 17 (I-17) highway, north of Phoenix.

Set to begin in 2021, the project will involve widening the 15-mile section between Anthem and Black Canyon City to three lanes.

It will also see the construction of an eight-mile flex lane system between Black Canyon City and Sunset Point.

The improvements are expected to be completed by 2023.

Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT) director John Halikowski said: “Investing in critical transportation infrastructure will drive Arizona’s 21st-century economy and support future prosperity.

“Improving I-17 has been a priority for many years and it is exciting to see that dream becoming a reality thanks to this collaboration led by Governor Ducey.”

Upon the project’s completion, the I-17 flex lanes along the eight-mile system will operate as a separate two-lane roadway to carry heavy traffic or keep traffic moving based on requirements or a closure in the stretch.

The fiscal year 2020 budget includes a $130m investment proposed for the project.

The project has received $50m funding from the regional planning agency Maricopa Association of Governments, as well as a $90m Infrastructure for Rebuilding America (INFRA) grant.

Ducey said: “On busy days, this stretch of Interstate 17 can see more than 50,000 drivers a day and we want to make sure every one of them gets to their destination safely and without long delays.”