Northbound I-5 Lane Closures set for South O.C.

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Northbound I-5 Lane Closures set for South O.C.

ORANGE – Drivers are advised that temporary lane closures on the northbound San Diego Freeway (I-5) in South Orange County are planned for 14 hours on Nov. 4 - 5, potentially causing significant traffic delays as freeway improvements reach another important milestone.

Three out of four northbound lanes will be closed beginning at 10 p.m. Friday, Nov. 4 between Avenida Palizada and Avenida Vista Hermosa in San Clemente. The northbound on-ramp and off-ramp at Avenida Pico also will shut down during the closure.

No southbound lane closures are scheduled.

Drivers should avoid the area during the 14-hour construction period if possible and plan for delays of up to one hour between 10 p.m. on Friday and noon on Saturday, Nov. 5. The heaviest delays are anticipated between 6 a.m. and noon on Saturday.

The construction work will allow northbound traffic to switch onto the newly constructed bridge over Avenida Pico in San Clemente. The traffic switch will allow for four lanes in each direction over Avenida Pico, as crews continue to work to add lanes to the bridge.

When the project is finished in 2018, the I-5 freeway through this area will include four regular lanes and a carpool lane in each direction.

“OCTA fully understands that the I-5 construction is a short-term inconvenience and we appreciate the public’s continued patience,” said OCTA Chair Lori Donchak. “The traffic switch this weekend is a milestone for a very important project that ultimately will ease freeway traffic problems in south Orange County.”

During the construction period, crews will lay new pavement, restripe the northbound freeway lanes and install temporary concrete barriers.

Currently, there are four lanes of northbound traffic on the freeway in this area. The lanes are being reduced to one open lane to allow for sufficient room for crews to work in the area, while ensuring the safety of workers and drivers.

The schedule calls for two lanes of northbound traffic to open on the new segment of freeway at 5 a.m. on Saturday. Work is scheduled to be completed by noon, at which time all four northbound lanes are scheduled to reopen on the newly constructed bridge.

Construction on this segment of the I-5 South County Improvement Project began in early 2015. The entire project will add nearly six miles of carpool lanes in each direction between Avenida Pico in San Clemente and San Juan Creek Road in San Juan Capistrano.

It also reconstructs the Avenida Pico interchange, widening the northbound on-ramp to three lanes and adding dual left-turn lanes from Avenida Pico to the northbound and southbound on-ramps.

The $230-million project is scheduled for completion in 2018 and is part of the Measure M program, the voter-approved, half-cent sales tax for transportation improvements.

For updated information on the project, visit

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