The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act has reached its 6,000th highway funding milestone, with a project to widen U.S. 60, or Grand Avenue, northwest of downtown Phoenix

"This marks a major milestone," said Ray LaHood, U.S. transportation secretary. "This important project will improve safety and reduce traffic in and around Phoenix. It will also, like the thousands that came before it, put people back to work."

The $44.5 million investment will go toward adding two more lanes to the four-lane road between State Route 303 and 99th Avenue. This section serves about 45,000 vehicles each day. The project will also involve improving intersections and medians and putting in new turning lanes at the intersections.

This area, an important link between Phoenix and Las Vegas, has no other major road other than Grand Avenue. The project will hopefully relieve some of the traffic caused by commuters and commercial trucks in this area.

Of the nearly $27 billion available for highway projects through the Recovery Act, Arizona has been allocated $520.9 million. To date, Arizona has funded 135 projects totaling $307.8 million. Nationwide, states have funded more than 2,400 projects worth more than $17 billion.