Project History

Environmental Review Process Resumed

Under the stewardship of CFLHD, the Hoover Bypass Project was rekindled and the federally mandated environmental review process resumed.  The National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), our country’s basic charter for protection of the environment, provides a framework for federal agencies to build projects like the Hoover Dam Bypass, while taking into account environmental factors. Examples of environmental factors include wildlife, noise, public safety, public service, air quality, and traffic circulation. The environmental process for the Hoover Dam Bypass Project followed the NEPA process ultimately leading to a Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) and a Record of Decision (ROD).

CFLHD studied four alternatives (including the "no-build" alternative) to determine the best crossing of the river from an engineering standpoint, while creating the least amount of impact to the surrounding environment. CFLHD completed the Draft Environmental Impact Statement in September 1998, with the cooperation of the Nevada Department of Transportation, the Arizona Department of Transportation, the U.S. National Park Service, the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, the U.S. Corps of Engineers, the U.S. Coast Guard, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Public hearings were held in Kingman, Boulder City and Las Vegas in October 1998. Through an open forum, CFLHD solicited comments from experts in the field of transportation, environmental groups, regulatory agencies, and members of surrounding communities.  Formal consultation with the Fish & Wildlife Service, Corps of Engineers, Environmental Protection Agency, and the State Historic Preservation Officers helped define mitigation measures to be incorporated into the project. Additional comments and mitigation measures were addressed in the FEIS issued in January 2001.

CFLHD identified the Sugarloaf Mountain Alternative as the preferred alternative based on five key factors:

  1. Comments received from the public, and other local, state and federal agencies during the environmental process.
  2. Collectively minimizing environmental impacts.
  3. Engineering and operational advantages.
  4. Minimizing harm to Section 4(f) properties.
  5. Slightly lower construction costs.

Record of Decision Issued

A Record of Decision was issued by FHWA in March 2001.  This was the final step mandated by The National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and provides the green light for the project to move ahead.  The Record of Decision identified the Sugarloaf Mountain Alignment as the preferred alignment.  This was one of three alignments studied in detail as part of the Environmental Impact StatementLearn more about the Sugarloaf Mountain Alignment on the  Design Activities page. 

Download a copy of the EIS
Download a copy of the ROD

Federal Highway Administration-Central Federal Lands Highway Division (CFLHD)
to Lead Project

A Project Management Team (PMT) was developed to oversee the design and construction of the project.  The PMT has representation from each of the major project stakeholders including the Federal Highway Administration, the States of Arizona and Nevada, the Bureau of Reclamation (BOR), the Western Area Power Authority (WAPA) and the National Park Service (NPS).  CFLHD will act in the lead management role for all elements of project procurement, design and construction.

Design Consultant Selected

On July 12, 2001, CFLHD awarded a contract to HDR Engineering, Inc. to provided design and construction support services for the Hoover Bypass Project.  An integrated team of professionals from HDR Engineering, T.Y. Lin International, Sverdrup Civil, Inc. and several supporting subconsultants make up the consultant team, collectively know as Hoover Support Team.

The work to be undertaken includes design of roadways, bridges, tunnels, wildlife underpasses and overpasses, utility design, high-capacity transmission tower relocations and a signature long-span bridge over the Colorado River.  The work will include geotecnical engineering, survey and mapping, and corridor architectural design.  Environmental mitigation measures outlined in the EIS will be implemented, and supplemental studies and documents will be prepared as needed.  Construction support services will also be provided.

Design Advisory Panel (DAP) Established

The DAP was established by FHWA as a result of the Programmatic Agreement that commits FHWA to implement specific activities and mitigation measures to resolve the adverse effects on historic properties.  The DAP, under the leadership of the CFLHD will provide input regarding the Corridor Design Criteria to minimize adverse effects to the Hoover Dam National Historic Landmark.  The DAP consists of members from FHWA, ADOT, NDOT, the Nevada and Arizona State Historic Preservation Officers (SHPOs), the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation (ACHP), the National Historic Landmark (NHL) Coordinator, NPS, BOR, WAPA and a Native American tribal representative, as well as an independent architectural historian and an independent registered landscape architect.  The DAP will not be responsible for technical and safety requirements, and will not make recommendations that are not technically feasible or are outside the scope and budget of the project.

The first DAP workshop was held in Las Vegas on December 3-5, 2001.

Native American Consultation to Continue

FHWA has made a commitment to continue the government-to-government consultation with the affected tribal governments throughout the design and construction process through a Memorandum of Understanding.  FHWA, with the consulting tribes under the Programmatic Agreement and Treatment Plan, will refine and elaborate on the measures to reduce adverse effects on the Sugarloaf Mountain Traditional Cultural Property (TCP).  The tribes will also have a representative on the DAP to provide input on the design aspects of the new bridge and roadway, and will be given the opportunity to monitor construction of the roadway facility through the TCP area and the related lithic scatter located on the eastern flank of Sugarloaf Mountain.




Copyright © All Rights Reserved.