- Associated Press - Tuesday, November 1, 2016

PHOENIX (AP) - Numerous native plants are being relocated from the route of a planned new Phoenix-area freeway so they can be eventually replanted along the highway once it is built.

The Arizona Department of Transportation says the plants being removed from the path of the South Mountain Freeway include ironwood and mesquite trees and ocotillo and barrel cactuses.

The 22-mile freeway will connect segments on the Interstate 10 on the east and west sides of the Phoenix area, while allowing drivers to avoid travelling through downtown Phoenix.

ADOT has relocated native plants before. Recent projects include construction of Loop 303 on the west side of the Phoenix and widening of the Loop 101 Pima Freeway in Scottsdale.

The agency’s first plant salvage effort was along State Route 87 in the mid-1980s.


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