SACRAMENTO (CBS 13) – The only way to get past Truxel on I-80 westbound this weekend is to take a detour on I-5. So Caltrans is advising drivers to plan out their routes before they leave home.
“Folks should try to avoid this area, if at all possible,” said Dennis Keaton, spokesperson for Caltrans. “We’re at the tail end of it. This is the last big push that we’re hoping to finish up on here.”
Local businesses around I-80 anticipate the weekend to be slow with so many possible customers avoiding the area.
“I think we’re going to slow down because there is no way to get in,” said Jason Daas, a supervisor at Black Bear Diner.
The restaurant is just west of the I-80 West El Camino exit. For the next two days, the only way to get there is to take the long way on El Centro Road.
“I think our local customers around here will come through,” Daas said. “I think we’re just going to miss the travelers.”
The exit ramp from I-80 Westbound to West El Camino will be closed until 5 am on Monday. A1 Mart owner Lakvinder Nijhar is one of many who thought the work would be done by now.
“Just got to get these old roadworks out of the way,” he said. “It’s been going on for two or three years now.”
But Keaton told CBS13 the agency had to face a few delays earlier this year.
“The weather days just kept on piling up,” he said. “And I’m not just talking about the rain; I’m talking about the heat.”
Keaton said the work is 95% done and construction should be wrapped up by the fall. But Mark Colclasure said he’s ready for the construction.
“It’s part of progress,” he said. “Yeah, it’s a pain, it’s difficult but in the end we get something better. And sometimes- it’s like working out at the gym, a little pain, a little gain.”
Driver John Morales believes the closures shouldn’t be a problem for locals.
“I know Sacramento very well, so I know my way around,” he said. “There’s all sorts of different routes you can go. It’s all about planning.”
According to Caltrans, the closure is the last major project on I-80. After the weekend, the agency still has a few smaller projects to complete (i.e. electrical and painting). However, the lanes will be ready and open to the public by mid-November.