NORWALK - Caltrans will permanently close the northbound I-5 off-ramp and southbound on-ramp at Firestone Boulevard next week as part of the freeway-widening project.The closures will take effect the night of April 4. Drivers can exit at either the Rosecrans Avenue, Norwalk Boulevard and Imperial Highway ramps. A digital portable message sign is at the ramps to notify drivers of the upcoming closure. Meanwhile, on April 8 Caltrans will begin pile-driving for the Shoemaker Avenue Bridge reconstruction. Work will take place from 7 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. in a construction zone facing southbound I-5 between Shoemaker and Loch Nevis avenues. Shoemaker, between Rosecrans and Excelsior Drive, will be closed for approximately one year until spring 2014. The Shoemaker Bridge is the first structure among the I-5 projects to be closed, demolished and to begin reconstruction. The Firestone Boulevard frontage road between Carmenita and Rosecrans was closed last month for realignment. The road will remain permanently closed except for a segment between Gracebee and Loch Nevis avenues, which will reopen in late summer 2013. Dollison Drive, a local street abutting the southbound I-5, was closed March 4 and will remain closed through September of this year. Finally, pile-driving for the new 10-lane Carmenita Road Bridge is ongoing at the intersection of Firestone and Carmenita, abutting the southbound freeway. Crews are setting 2,500 steel piles into the ground with work taking place weekdays from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Local residents and businesses can expect noise from jackhammers, equipment back-up alarms and work crews. Accessibility for emergency vehicles will be maintained at all times and water trucks will minimize dust levels, Caltrans said. The work is part of a massive project to widen the 5 Freeway between Norwalk and the Orange County border.
********** Published: March 28, 2013 - Volume 11 - Issue 50