Company:
Caltrans District 12
Status:
Awarded
Awarded:
Transportation Project of the Year
Additional Files


Additional Information

N/A

I-5/SR-74 Interchange Improvement Project

Project Location:

This project was located at the intersection of I-5 and SR-74 in the City of San Juan Capistrano within Orange County.

Project Description:

The I-5/SR-74 Interchange Improvement Project reconstructed Ortega Highway Bridge over the Interstate 5 Freeway and increased the number of lanes on the bridge from four to eight.  All four on- and off-ramps were reconstructed.  The project also lengthened the span of the bridge to provide room underneath for the new northbound loop on-ramp to the freeway.  In addition, State Route 74 (Ortega Highway) was realigned west of the bridge through the downtown area of San Juan Capistrano, and Del Obispo Street west of the Interchange was realigned eliminating the need for two intersections and allowing smoother traffic flow.  The project’s context sensitive design showcases San Juan Capistrano’s Spanish architectural style through use of colored concrete on the new bridge and on its hand painted textured retaining walls.  The final result fits beautifully into this treasured historic area.

Project Justification:

This $77.2 million major freeway improvement project was initiated by the California Department of Transportation and Orange County Transportation Authority to improve traffic congestion as well as improve traffic safety and operations by reconstructing the I-5/SR-74 Interchange.  The City of San Juan Capistrano also played a key role in the project’s initiation by preparing the project’s environmental document.  The project effectively doubled the capacity of the Ortega Highway Bridge over I-5, assisting commuters who travel to and from the Inland Empire daily on State Route 74 as well as local drivers from Orange County.  The demolition and reconstruction of the bridge over Interstate 5 was accomplished one half at a time.  This allowed the bridge to remain open to the travelling public as well as pedestrians except for intermittent nighttime activities including demolition and falsework installation.  Construction was accomplished with minimal interruption to Interstate 5, California’s pre-eminent north/south artery.  These much-needed improvements to outdated infrastructure help relieve congestion in the area and have enhanced the economy and livability of many while reducing our carbon footprint. 

Special Circumstances:

Caltrans District 12, Orange County Transportation Authority, Flatiron Construction and the City of San Juan Capistrano worked as partners with community stakeholders to keep local businesses, schools and organizations informed about the project schedule and local detours during construction.  A local group of concerned small business owners was formed and their meetings were attended by construction and public information staff to answer questions and keep locals informed at every stage of the project.  Project schedules were changed to accommodate the local historic Swallows Day Celebration as well as the holiday shopping season.  Local community input was sought for aesthetic designs that would reflect local architectural style as well as local terrain.  This project was over ten years in the making.  It brought a much-needed update to the interchange, but as often happens local community was nervous going forward with such a large and potentially disruptive project, knowing that the work would last for two years.  By working closely together with the City and local community, the team managed to avoid potential pitfalls and accomplished an end result that was a very successful collaboration.

Project Attachments:

This $77.2 million project began in February 2013 and concluded in October 2015.

Award Citation::

Caltrans District 12, Orange County Transportation Authority, Flatiron Construction and the City of San Juan Capistrano worked as partners with community stakeholders to provide much-needed improvements to outdated infrastructure at the I-5 /SR-72 Interchange. The completed project helps relieve congestion in the area and enhances the economy and livability of the State of California, Orange County and the City of San Juan Capistrano.

Suggested Award Summary:

Caltrans District 12, Orange County Transportation Authority, Flatiron Construction and the City of San Juan Capistrano worked as partners with community stakeholders to provide much-needed improvements to outdated infrastructure at the I-5 /SR-72 Interchange. The completed project helps relieve congestion in the area and enhances the economy and livability of the State of California, Orange County and the City of San Juan Capistrano.

This $77.2 million major freeway improvement project was initiated by the California Department of Transportation and Orange County Transportation Authority to improve traffic congestion as well as improve traffic safety and operations by reconstructing the I-5/SR-74 Interchange.  The City of San Juan Capistrano also played a key role in the project’s initiation by preparing the project’s environmental document.  The project effectively doubled the capacity of the Ortega Highway Bridge over I-5, assisting commuters who travel to and from the Inland Empire daily on State Route 74 as well as local drivers from Orange County.  Construction was accomplished with minimal interruption to Interstate 5, California’s preeminent north/south artery, and the SR-74 bridge remained open to the travelling public as well as pedestrians except for intermittent nighttime activities including demolition and falsework installation. 

By working collaboratively the project team was able to accommodate local civic leaders during annual city celebrations and accommodate local businesses during the economically important holiday shopping season.  All of this was accomplished on time and within budget bringing the project to a successful completion.

CEC

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