In an effort to reduce traffic congestion, improve mobility, and repair lanes, the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans) began their project to revitalize and widen Highway 50 in Sacramento in March of 2021. It's projected to be completed by 2025.
Spokeswoman Angela DaPrato with Caltrans said the construction for the new sound walls in the Stockton Boulevard and 65th Street areas are almost done, with an interview with The Sacramento Bee.
“I think there’s a lot of interest generating on this project because it’s some of an inconvenience for motorists, there’s an inconvenience for residents who are right next to the project as far as the loud construction noises because this is a huge undertaking,” DaPrato said. “I think there’s a lot of anticipation for the project to be completed.”
From the Interstate 5 Interchange to Watt Avenue, the $460 million project has unfortunately pushed out popular leisure spots, including the Sacramento Antique Faire at 21st and X streets and the Sunday Certified Farmers' Market at W and 8th streets.
DaPrato said while Highway 50‘s construction has caused congestion and delayed arrival times for motorists, she wants to remind residents why the project began in the first place: “Prior to construction starting there was a lot of congestion on that highway so we’re asking motorists to please be patient while we’re doing our construction on the highway and basically making improvements for years to come," said the Caltrans spokeswoman.
A new Highway 50 will include new high-occupancy vehicle and carpool lanes, widened ramps and bridges and improved over crossings and freeway pavement, DaPrato said. This project also includes an expansion to Sacramento Regional Transit District’s light rail from Sunrise Boulevard to downtown Folsom.
According to Fix50.com, a website with a full overview of the Highway 50 project, the project will allow connectivity and consistency with the planned HOV system in the Sacramento Region, enhance mobility and provide incentives for ride sharing during peak period travel, improve US 50 to meet the growing travel demand in the Sacramento Region, provide an option for reliable peak period travel time, use the highway facilities as efficiently as possible, and improve general traffic operations by reducing congestion and travel time.
The funding for the project came from the SHOPP Roadway Rehabilitation Program, Solutions for Congested Corridors Program (SCCP) by State of California’s Senate Bill (SB) 1 – Road Repair and Accountability Act of 2017, and Sacramento Measure A Transportation Sales Tax Program managed by Sacramento Transportation Authority (STA).
The construction project originally was going to start in 2019, and finish in 2024, but was delayed for roughly two years.