Better Traffic Flow for Residents, Recreational Visitors

Many Riverside County roads and highways projects that will improve safety and reduce congestion got a boost thanks to funding from SB 1. This includes the Route 91 Pachappa Underpass project.

The 91 is arguably one of the most overwhelmed freeways in Southern California. Through Riverside County, commuters are familiar with the “Corona crawl” nickname that traffic reporters often relay. As part of the freeway expansion project, construction on the Route 91 Pachappa Drive Underpass includes building a retaining wall along Route 91 and removing part of the overhead railroad bridge. Shoulder strengthening along the West Bound Mission Inn Avenue off ramp from State Route 91 with drainage improvements and removal of existing stockpiled earthen materials are also part of the project. Construction began in April 2020 with work anticipated to be completed in mid-2021.

In an effort to relieve the daily traffic jams at Railroad Canyon Road and Interstate 15 in Lake Elsinore, a $41 million project will upgrade the exchange. The construction project addresses the needs of the area’s growing number of residents and recreational visitors. The project includes:

  • Building auxiliary lanes on I-15 to help drivers enter and exit the highway. This increases safety and will reduce traffic back-ups.
  • The addition of two new lanes on Railroad Canyon Road through the interchange as well as new lanes to the on-ramps and off-ramps with I-15 increases capacity.
  • Replacing the northbound diamond off-ramp with hook-style on– and off-ramps that both connect to Grape Street aim to improve traffic flow.
  • Construction of sidewalks and bike lanes along Railroad Canyon Road provide access for pedestrians.

Improved air quality will come with these Riverside County roads and highways projects because they will reduce the number of idling vehicles waiting to enter or exit I-15.

On the slate is the replacement of the 80-year-old Hamner Avenue Bridge. Construction is on track to begin in December 2020, with completion anticipated in January 2023. Located near the border between Norco and Eastvale, it is approximately 1,300 feet to the west of the I-15 Bridges over the Santa Ana River in Norco.

Today’s traffic must squeeze into two narrow lanes built in 1939. In addition to widening the bridge to handle the region’s increasing traffic, it must be updated to adhere to current seismic standards.  The Market Street Bridge and Mission Boulevard Bridge are two other bridge projects currently under review as future projects in Riverside County.

Thanks to funds from SB 1, the County expects to invest $500 million over the next 10 years to improve Riverside County roads. The following projects were on the schedule for Fiscal Year 2019-20:

  • 18th Avenue Resurfacing
  • Aurora Road Resurfacing
  • Cajalco Road Resurfacing
  • Chicago Avenue Reconstruction
  • Clifton Street Resurfacing
  • Corkill Road Resurfacing
  • Datil Road Resurfacing
  • Hobson Way Resurfacing
  • La Sierra Avenue Reconstruction & Slurry Seal
  • Langlois Road Resurfacing
  • Lloyd Street Reconstruction
  • Lovekin Boulevard Resurfacing
  • Mesa Drive Reconstruction
  • Sierra Del Sol Resurfacing
  • Thomas Street Reconstruction

Slated for 2020-2021 is the resurfacing of Ramona Expressway covering 9.2 miles of La Sierra Avenue from Rider Street to Warren Road in the communities of Nuevo, Lakeview, and Gilman Hot Springs.

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