Q: How is Caltrans improving I-5?
A: Caltrans is investing $3.2 billion to significantly improve I-5 in Los Angeles County from Burbank to the Kern County line and from the Los Angeles/Orange County line to I-605. There are approximately 17 projects to complete these improvements:
- High-occupancy vehicle (HOV or carpool) lanes
- HOV connectors
- New/realigned on- and off-ramps
- New/realigned bridges
- Lanes specifically for trucks
- Additional general purpose lanes
- Upgraded frontage roads
- New pavement
- Reconfigured interchanges
- Pedestrian overcrossings
- Grade separations
Q: How long will construction last?
A: Construction will continue through 2016, though most projects will be completed by 2015. The timeline for each project is available on this website, www.I-5info.com.
Q: How will motorists benefit?
A: Improvements to the I-5 Corridor will enhance safety, improve traffic flow, reduce congestion, encourage ridesharing, decrease surface street traffic, and improve air quality.
Q: What is the funding source?
A: Most of the I-5 improvements are funded through a combination of federal, state and local resources. Additionally, several projects have been partially funded through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA).
Q: How can I get more information about the improvements?
A: The I-5 website (www.I-5info.com) has information on all of the I-5 improvements. You can also call us on the toll-free I-5 Hotline at (855) 454-6335. Assistance is available in English and Spanish, and can be arranged in other languages as well.
Q: Do you have illustrations of what the completed projects will look like?
A: A: Caltrans does not have renderings of completed projects. Some projects have “after” maps, which you can view on this website (www.I-5info.com). The plans for all projects are available on the Caltrans website, www.dot.ca.gov/dist07. If you’d like to see plans, call us on the I-5 Hotline at (855) 454-6335 and we’ll give you the project number, but you’ll need to research the documents.
Q: Where can I find closure information?
A: You can either visit the project page on this website, or you can have weekly closure lists emailed to you regularly. For the latter, select the project that interests you from the drop-down list in the left column of the homepage and type in your email address. We will not share your email and you can unsubscribe at any time.
Q: What is an HOV lane?
A: HOV stands for High Occupancy Vehicle lanes, more commonly called carpool lanes. HOV lanes are an effective way to encourage ridesharing and reduce congestion. Vehicles carrying two or more people can use carpool lanes in Los Angeles County.
Q: What is Caltrans doing about rough pavement?
A: Several projects focus primarily on pavement replacement; most others include pavement work. When concrete slabs are replaced, motorists may notice some bumpiness temporarily until grinding is complete and the surface has been smoothed out.
Q: Why don’t I see much activity when I drive by?
A: Each stage of construction is carefully planned and timed to maximize efficiency and minimize impacts on residents and motorists. Much of the work is performed at night when traffic volumes are lower to avoid inconveniencing motorists. So, you may not see crews working during the day.
Q: Will Caltrans need to access my property to work on the freeway?
A: In some cases, yes. If your property is affected, the Caltrans Right of Way Division will contact you well in advance to discuss how your property will be impacted.
Q: How can I find out whether my property will be affected by a construction project?
A: If you have questions about an upcoming project, you can contact the Right of Way Division at (213) 897-4811. If you have questions about a project in progress, call the I-5 Hotline at (855) 454-6335 or send us an email through the Contact Us tab. Be sure to include your address and contact information.
Q: What should I do about my pets when crews are working nearby?
A: For the safety of your pets, please make sure they are secure and unable to get near the work area.
Q: Is it normal to feel vibrations in my house during construction?
A: Yes. Vibrations are common during some construction operations, such as pile driving. Pile driving involves driving poles into the ground to provide foundation support for new structures. These operations are brief, so the vibrations won’t last long.
Q: What is Caltrans doing to minimize construction noise?
A:Caltrans performs particularly noisy operations during the day. Regardless of when work is performed, contractors must comply with state and federal noise regulations, and Caltrans inspectors ensure that they do. More information about Caltrans noise policies is available in the Environmental Handbook.
Q: Why are trees being removed?
A: It may be necessary to remove trees (or other vegetation) to make room for some of the freeway improvements. Whenever possible, vegetation will be replaced with native, fast-growing varieties before the project is completed.
Q: How can I request that graffiti be removed or trash picked up in the construction zone?
A: Call the I-5 Hotline at (855) 454-6335 or email us through the Contact Us tab. Be sure to provide the location, a description, and your contact information. If the graffiti or trash is not in a construction zone, call Caltrans Public Affairs at (213) 897-3656. Due to the amount of graffiti that Caltrans must paint, it may take several weeks to remove graffiti.
Q: Where can I report a traffic problem related to a construction project?
A: You can report construction-related traffic problems by calling the I-5 Hotline at (855) 454-6335 or by sending us an email through the Contact Us tab. If it’s an emergency, call 911. For non-emergencies to the California Highway Patrol, call 1-800-835-5247.
Q: Why is it necessary to have k-rail (concrete barriers) at the entrance of on-ramps?
A: K-rails are used to guide motorists merging onto the freeway and to prevent them from weaving into the work area. This protects both the motorist and the construction crew.
Q: Why is it necessary to have panels on top of k-rails?
A: Motorists may be distracted by construction and direct their attention to the work rather than the road. The panels help reduce distracted driving.
Q: Why is the striping difficult to see?
A: Temporary striping may be used to delineate lanes while construction is underway – often when lanes need to be shifted. It will be replaced by permanent striping before the project is complete. If you find that the temporary striping has faded, let us know.
Q: Can someone talk to my group about the I-5 improvements?
A: We welcome opportunities to speak to groups. Daytime hours (8 a.m. to 5 p.m.) work best. Please give us plenty of notice so we can schedule appropriate staff. Alternatively, if your group has specific questions, call us anytime on the I-5 Hotline at (855) 454-6335. We can also provide informational materials (brochures, maps, fact sheets, etc.) that you can distribute to your group members.