Irvine to widen University Drive near UCI in hopes of relieving congestion – Orange County Register – California News

Irvine to widen University Drive near UCI in hopes of relieving congestion – Orange County Register – California News

Commuters driving near UC Irvine may feel some relief when the city completes the widening of part of University Drive in 2019.

The City Council on Tuesday, Sept. 12, unanimously voted to ask staff to seek bids for an estimated $17 million construction to add a third lane in both directions between MacArthur Boulevard and Campus Drive.

The project will also fix the pavement throughout the 1.1-mile stretch, extend left-turn pockets, add right-turn lanes, improve stormwater drainage, add LED street lights, install low water use irrigation and landscaping and upgrade traffic signals with video detection.

The City Council directed staff to add mature plants and railing between a bike trail and University Drive to protect joggers and cyclists.

The project is part of the city’s plans to spend more than $116 million toward solving traffic congestion, which many residents say is the most pressing issue facing this growing master planned community.

Construction is scheduled to begin January 2018 and be completed May 2019, according to a city staff report.

Work will take place mainly 7 a.m.-7 p.m. Monday-Friday with night work permitted 10 p.m.-5 a.m. Two lanes will be open in both directions during the day, staff said. Bicyclists can either share the road with cars or ride on an adjacent bike trail.

The city has spent $2.2 million, in addition to the…

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