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By Jeff Pack
Writer 

Officials celebrate Scott Road/Interstate 215 Interchange work with groundbreaking

 

Last updated 10/19/2018 at 3:53am

Shane Gibson

Dignitaries gather for a groundbreaking ceremony at the Shops at Scott center for the start of the Scott Road/I-215 interchange project, Oct. 11.

When it's all said and done, in less than two years, Scott Road in Menifee will be widened to three lanes in both directions, turn lanes will be added and the blood pressure of area commuters will lower significantly.

Though work by Guy F. Atkinson Construction has already begun on the project, Thursday, Oct. 11, city and county officials gathered for an official groundbreaking.

The Menifee city engineer and public works director welcomed the crowd and introduced the speakers that included Menifee Mayor Bill Zimmerman, Menifee councilmembers Matthew Liesemeyer and Lesa Sobek, Riverside County Supervisor Marion Ashley, Caltrans Deputy District Director David Bricker, Riverside County Transportation Commission Deputy Director John Standiford and Riverside County Supervisor Chuck Washington.

"It's just a real honor and a pleasure to be here this morning. It's just a real exciting day for all of us, a historic day," Zimmerman said. "You know Menifee's been a city for 10 years, and so I think about our 10-year birthday and what a great present this is. Eighteen months from now, it will be a tremendous present when it's done."

Zimmerman said there were improvements to made to Newport Road a few years back and that he is looking forward to the improvements made in the Scott Road project, specifically due to the fact that the city is one of the fastest-growing cities in Riverside County.

"When you think about growth and how many vehicles are going to be on the road, and all the homes that are coming, we need have our infrastructure in place to be able to handle all of that growth that's coming," he said. "So what we're doing today is exactly that. We're listening to the people out there that are concerned and are cautious and they're saying, 'Gosh, Menifee's changing.' But, we're being responsible and we're making sure that we're keeping those concerns in mind."

Zimmerman talked about the city's long-term capital improvement plan, called Menifee Moving, which identified 168 projects and seven major infrastructure projects.

"This being one of them," Zimmerman said. "I live right on the other side of the freeway here, and my daughter went to schools here, so we're used to the growing pains. So I am looking at all of the families that are coming here and how this will really improve their quality of life."

After the speeches were over, the group picked up the ceremonial shovels and officially kicked-off work.

The project, which has been on the county's to-do list since 2005, cleared several environmental and engineering hurdles in the last several years.

The county Transportation & Land Management Agency is managing the project under an agreement with Caltrans, as well as the cities of Menifee and Murrieta.

Shane Gibson

Crews begin the early stages of construction at the current Scott Road bridge for the first phase of the Scott Road/I-215 interchange project, Oct. 11.

The expansion will require significant bridge reconstruction and will take roughly two years to complete, officials said, and will be able to accommodate the expected 70,000 vehicles that will travel through the area by 2035.

The first phase will focus on the expansion of the Scott Road overcrossing. Now at only two lanes, the expansion will create six lanes and loop on-ramps.

Auxiliary access lanes will be added to the freeway and traffic flow meters will be placed on onramps to control traffic. Roadway shoulders will also be widened, and there will be drainage, lighting and signage improvements along Scott Road, between Antelope and Haun roads.

Eventually, officials said, Scott Road that connects to Bundy Canyon Road will be widened all the way to Interstate 15.

For more information on the project and up-to-the-minute construction traffic alerts, visit http://www.cityofmenifee.us/scottrdinterchange.

Jeff Pack can be reached at [email protected]

 

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