By Marissa Perlman

SACRAMENTO (CBS13) – A road construction boom along Sacramento’s perimeter has drivers bracing behind the wheel. Three Sacramento highways will be in the middle of major construction.

Caltrans says traffic trouble and a Sacramento slowdown will happen because of these three construction projects on multiple major roadways all happening at once: the Interstate 5 project, Fix Sac 99 and the Fix 50 enhancement project.

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“It’s been a pain dealing with it. A lot more traffic and congestion, and the lanes are always shifting around,” one Sacramento driver said. “Sometimes it’s not easy to tell where the lines are.”

Long-term projects on both I-5 and 50 could take years to finish. Plus, commutes will be complicated by the Fix Sac 99 project that will shut down a three-and-a-half-mile stretch of Highway 99 in both directions for a four-day period beginning Friday night.

Drivers are seeing more accidents in construction zones.

“I feel it really is dangerous,” said Jarrell Triplett.

Recently, there was a six-car pileup on Highway 50. No one was seriously hurt, but the crash landed right in the middle of the Fix 50 construction project.

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Now, Caltrans is reminding drivers to slow down in construction zones. But why are these projects going on all at the same time?

Anglea DaPrato with Caltrans says one of the main reasons is funding. Cash now funneling in from Senate Bill 1 is meant to improve California infrastructure.

“We are really getting the funding that we’ve been needing for a long time to do a lot of big projects,” DaPrato said.

Caltrans says designs for these projects weren’t ready when COVID hit in 2020. For now, drivers say they’ll deal with delays, hoping this traffic headache is worth it and no one gets hurt.

“I know it’s a hassle, but I guess they have to do what they have to do in order for things to get done,” Triplett said.

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Caltrans has been working on the 99 project for months. That’s why that project will only take 4 days. They’ve been building whole pieces of highway at a facility in Lathrop. They’ll bring those pieces to the highway and fit them together like a puzzle piece, making the process move more quickly.

Marissa Perlman