Paving the first freeway lanes of the Loop 303 in north Phoenix is expected to begin this fall.
The Arizona Department of Transportation says motorists will be able to drive on a portion of the initial freeway between Interstate 17 and Lake Pleasant Parkway beginning in 2012.
Four lanes will stretch east and west over 16 miles.
The 303 is envisioned by local government as a big rig bypass allowing truckers to skip Phoenix and pick up I-10 around Goodyear.
That should relieve the Loop 101 and accommodate future growth in the northwest area.