Progress is continuing at the construction site at the Interstate 80/Highway 65 interchange, where efforts to add a third lane before Pleasant Grove (northbound) are under way.
Though not much is visible of the project along Highway 65 other than the towering cranes, below the highway 12, 100-foot-deep foundation holes have been dug. These holes will be filled with concrete and support the 60-foot-tall columns that will eventually hold the third lane up.
This work is part of Phase 1 of the expansion project that began on April 30. The project, led by the Placer County Transportation Planning Agency (PCTPA) and California Department of Transportation, is expected to reduce traffic build up on Interstate 80. The specific work underway right now includes adding a lane from I-80 to Stanford Ranch/Galleria Boulevard and making fixes to areas where vehicles cross lanes to turn left.
The later phases of the project will include adding a lane on each connector between Highway 65 and I-80, maintaining the Taylor Road/Interstate 80 access point and eliminating the “weaving movements” on I-80 eastbound between Eureka Road and Highway 65. The agencies are still looking for funding mechanisms for these remaining phases.
The Interstate 80/Highway 65 interchange was constructed in the mid-1980s when Placer County’s population was much smaller (136,000). Today, the population is around 380,000 and the PCTPA estimates that nearly 210,000 vehicles utilize the interchange every day.
If you have questions about commute times and routes in the area, make sure to download our Guide to Relocating to Placer County.