With improvements to San Juan Capistrano’s Ortega Highway interchange nearly done, commuters can look forward to a smoother, safer, and more efficient journey.
Work on the Interstate 5 (I-5)/Ortega Highway Interchange Improvement Project is 80 percent complete, and the project is expected to wrap up in the coming months.
The $86 million project, which began construction in February 2013, widens the Ortega Highway bridge as well as the existing ramps and adds a loop on-ramp to northbound I-5. The project also realigns Ortega Highway to curve into Del Obispo Street. This will improve traffic flow on Ortega Highway as well as ease regional commutes.
The deck for the second half of the new bridge was poured at the end of May. The wood forms supporting the structure are set to be removed by late June or early July. Concrete pours to fill the small gap between the north and south sides of the bridge are scheduled for mid- to late July.
Meanwhile, later this month motorists will see crews placing white foam blocks at the southbound I-5 off-ramp to Ortega. These strong, lightweight blocks, known as geofoam, are used as fill for the ramp, taking the place of dirt, which requires time to compact.
The northbound on-ramp and the remaining portion of the southbound off-ramp are scheduled to be paved by the end of July, but they won’t open until the bridge opens in late August or early September.
For more information about the project and to sign up for email construction alerts, visit octa.net.