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Insights Project Neon | Engineering safer connections

image of project NEON in Nevada

Project Neon is the largest public works project in the history of Nevada. It will widen 3.7 miles of Interstate 15 (I-15) between Sahara Avenue and the “Spaghetti Bowl” interchange in downtown Las Vegas.

This stretch of highway is also the state’s busiest – 300,000 vehicles, or one-tenth of Nevada’s population use it daily. It also sees 25,000 lane changes per hour and unfortunately 1,400 collisions a year. With traffic expected to double by 2035, Nevada Department of Transportation (NDOT) are determined to improve this critical section of highway.


As lead designer, AtkinsRéalis ’s Atkins business manages all design and engineering services on this complex multi-phased project. Responsibilities include design services for roadway, drainage, bridges and structures, traffic control, signing, pavement marking, landscape, and intelligent transportation systems (ITS). We also provide quality control, utility coordination, public involvement, design surveying, and design support during construction.


Our design plans to boost safety for Project Neon by creating a continuous 22-mile stretch from Route 95 through I-15. To achieve this we’ve separated freeway and arterial traffic, reduced the number of merging sections, and connected lanes for high occupancy vehicles (HOV). The result will be better access to downtown Las Vegas and the resort corridor, which will also boost regional economic development.


We realized that a project as large as Project Neon would be challenging for our local communities. So we came up with an exciting, user-friendly way to keep the public up to speed on a daily basis. We created a full 3D animation that works like a gaming system. It has allowed residents to ‘fly over the area’ and plan their commutes during each phase of construction.


18 mph
Av. speed from US 95 to I-15 without Project Neon, peak hours

56 mph
Av. speed from US 95 to I-15 after Project Neon improvements, peak hours

Our teams are helping to make life better for everyone in Nevada. The work we’re doing on Project Neon will reduce travel delays, create jobs, improve air quality and freeway operations, and make it easier to get into downtown Las Vegas.

Find out how you can work with us to shape a better world. Apply here.