EL CENTRO — State and local officials gathered today in Winterhaven at the California Highway Patrol Station to celebrate the start of construction on the second and third of five segments of the Interstate 8 (I-8) Update Project. Speakers included Caltrans District 11 Director Laurie Berman, Imperial County Transportation Commission Executive Director Mark Baza and California Highway Patrol Public Information Officer Jeffery Knutson.
“We are making an extraordinary investment in transportation improvements in Imperial County with more than $500 million in planned projects during the next four years,” said Berman. “This means jobs, improved road conditions and ultimately, a better transportation system for the region.”
Segment 2 of the $400 million I-8 Update project begins just west of State Route 98 and continues for 9.5 miles to Gordon Wells Road. Segment 3 begins near the Agricultural checkpoint and continues 6.8 miles to 4th Avenue in Winterhaven.
Work on the I-8 Update is scheduled to be done in five segments over a period of four years. Construction on Segment 1, just west of State Route 7, began in February and is replacing 9.5 miles of pavement. The first three segments will be completed by 2018. Construction on segments 4 and 5 will begin in 2017 and will be completed by 2019.
The I-8 Update project is replacing 48 miles of pavement on the interstate from State Route 111 to the California/Arizona state line. The new pavement is being constructed with a process called Continuously Reinforced Concrete Pavement (CRCP). The process uses steel reinforcing bars placed within the concrete along the entire length of the lanes.
CRCP is projected to last for at least 70 years.