By Mass Communications Specialist 1st Class Eli Medellin, Naval Weapons Station Seal Beach Public Affairs
U.S. Navy and Marine Corps personnel and community dignitaries gathered at Naval Weapons Station Seal Beach Detachment Fallbrook to celebrate completion of a project to ease the flow of traffic onto the base.
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In recent years, the number of vehicles using the weapons station gate for access to Camp Pendleton has increased dramatically, mirroring the overall increase in personnel numbers at the Marine Corps installation.
Traffic backups onto local roads had become a significant problem in the community of Fallbrook.
"Starting at around 5 o'clock in the morning, we would have about two or three hours of traffic going back as far as three or four miles," said Navy Anti-terrorism Officer, Senior Chief Master-at-Arms James Bolibrzuch. "We don't just wave IDs through - every ID has to be checked."
The project was a combined effort between the Navy, Marine Corps and San Diego County.
During the course of the project, the Main Gate guardhouse was completely replaced, the area was re-paved, widened and re-striped for one additional lane, and additional security barrier systems were installed. San Diego County re-paved and re-striped the public road leading up to the gate, adding an additional lane on their side as well.
During the ribbon cutting ceremony, Public Works Officer Cmdr. Rafael Lim said that, since project completion, patrons of the Fallbrook gate have been reporting a time savings of at least thirty minutes a day. "What can you do with thirty minutes?" he asked. "When you think about it, that's at least two and a half hours a week. It becomes more significant that way."
The improvements at the gate are expected to ease morning congestion on Ammunition Road leading onto the base by up to 50 percent.
Will the improvements help your commute? Tell us in the comments.