A third lane of Interstate 215 in Murrieta should be open to motorists soon.
Construction began in spring 2011 to add another lane in each direction between Scott Road and Murrieta Hot Springs Road. The lanes should be open to through traffic by late this month, according to an official with Riverside County Transportation Commission.
"There are about 15 days of work left," John Standiford, deputy executive director of RCTC, said late last week. "The work left to do is minor."
This includes striping, much of which must be performed at night, he said, and crews do not work on weekends.
As such, intermittent night-time lane closures will continue this week with the exception of Monday night. Southbound lanes will be affected between 9 p.m. and 5 a.m. Tuesday through Thursday, and between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m. Friday. Northbound lanes will be affected from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. Tuesday through Thursday, and from 11 p.m. to 7 a.m. Friday. At least one lane in each direction will remain open during the closures.
A reduced speed limit of 55 mph though the construction zone remains in effect.
The I-215 South Project was funded by Measure A and state bond funding, and brought an estimated 594 jobs, according to RCTC.org.
The project also consisted of adding a shoulder in each direction within the existing median, which was expected to reduce the impacts of traffic congestion along the strip of roadway.
Additionally, the Keller Road undercrossing just north of Clinton Keith Road was widened to add a median barrier.
Existing pavement to create a smoother ride for motorists and adjust freeway grading and drainage was also performed.
"It should be open to motorists by the end of September, the latter part of the month," Standiford said.
A ribbon-cutting ceremony is tentatively scheduled for mid-October he said, in conjunction with ground-breaking on the next phase of the project—widening 12.5 miles of Interstate 215 from Scott Road to Nuevo Road.
A contract is expected to be awarded Sept. 12 for that work, known as the I-215 Central Project, he said.
Further down the line, a carpool lane will be added in each direction from Nuevo Road to Highway 60, according to RCTC.org. However, the south and central projects were given priority because only two lanes were available to motorists.