SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — After months of preparation, patience will be the word of the day for drivers as the Fix 50 project beings on Tuesday.
Eric Dillon drives all over the valley as a tow truck driver and uses Highway 50 to connect to cities such as Elk Grove and Roseville.
Only three eastbound lanes will be open while crews repave a small stretch of the highway from 18th Street to 24th Street.
Dillon says he’ll try to avoid that area, but knows Interstate 5 and Interstate 80 will be messy alternatives as well.
“Just find the smoothest way through it,” he said. “We got response times to meet just like the paramedics, fire and police, we got deadlines to meet also.”
As Megan MacKinnon wraps up her day on Monday, she’s already dreading Tuesday’s drive.
The drive on 50 to Bradshaw can take her 30 minutes on a good day, but Caltrans is warning people like Megan to expect delays up to an hour.
Caltrans will be monitoring traffic through a series of cameras trained on the road. They will work with police to spot trouble spots and adjust traffic lights to relieve pressure.
MacKinnon says she’ll try to leave work early, but she’s worried it won’t help much.
“We are already having trouble with six lanes, and no we are going to go to three,” she said. “I’m not too sure what I’m going to do.”
The State of California’s Human Resources department is paying close attention to the traffic trouble on Highway 50.
Because of the Fix 50 project, state employees may not be filling Sacramento’s public parking garages in the same numbers.
In response to the construction, the state’s department of human resources sent out a memo asking department heads to consider allowing employees to alternate work week schedules, flextime and telecommuting.
Of California’s 221,000 state employees, one-third of them work in Sacramento.