Wednesday Apr 01 2009
Interstate 80 repair project revving up
By: Gloria Beverage
Closures mean nighttime detours for motorists
The first night of detours on Interstate 80 between Colfax and the Nevada State line apparently went without a hitch. Construction crews closed the interstate just after midnight on Wednesday while they began making repairs to the 50-year-old interstate. Westbound passenger vehicles were detoured along Rollins Lake Road, while big rigs, buses and RVs were required to use the Highway 20/49 corridor. “The first night of the westbound detours went very smoothly,” noted Lt. John Arrabit, commander of the California Highway Patrol’s Gold Run office. “Commercial vehicle operators and other motorists were safety conscious and cooperative and, as a result, did not experience any delays other than those associated with having to travel a bit out of their way along the detour routes,” he continued. California Highway Patrol officers, he added, are committed to protecting the construction crews as well as ensuring a safe flow of traffic through the detour routes. “Hopefully last night was an indication of what we can expect throughout the entire project. Our goal is to get through this project without any incidents. Patience will be the key to our success,” he said. “Come this fall, we will all benefit from the new roadway surface.” Granite Construction Inc. of Sacramento is overseeing work on the Gold Run III project, which will require detouring westbound I-80 traffic between Magra and Colfax. The contractor currently estimates the detours will be required for 112 nights. The nighttime westbound closure will continue through April 19, then from May 1 through May 13 and again on Aug. 1 through Sept. 9. Eastbound closures will be April 20 through April 30, then May 14 through July 31. The work will require detours along Highway 20 and Rollins Lake Road during night hours. Passenger vehicles will be detoured along Rollins Lake Road, while big rigs, buses and RVs will be required to use the Highway 20/49 corridor. The closures, in effect between 7 p.m. and 8 a.m. (10 a.m. on weekends) will be in only one direction at a time. Granite Construction was awarded the $70 million construction project to repair 11.5 miles of the highway. Repairs will continue through Nov. 30 and involve overlaying the mainline with asphalt concrete, replacing the median barrier, upgrading the drainage system and making improvements to the bridges. Message boards providing up-to-date information on expected destination times are being placed along the highway from Mustang, Nev. to the Golden Gate Bridge. Motorists can call 1-877-362-8080 for recorded information or log onto www.getacross80.com for travel information, project descriptions, sign up for email alerts, view live traffic camera and read the latest news on the repair project. Eight projects totaling more than $420 million are planned to repair Interstate 80 this year.