Commuters adjust to new 580 flyover

April 28, 2008 8:32:07 AM PDT
It's Bay Area commuter versus the new flyover connecting 580 with 101 in the North Bay. It opened Sunday with massive backups and problems were again noticed on Monday.

Transportation officials are expecting and bracing for a lot of problems due to the ramp. The number one lane will have less time and space to cross the merging traffic and jump on the 580 connector to hit the freeway.

Caltrans has several signs to warn drivers they have 1,000 feet or less to merge onto the flyover. It's a little tricky and confusing - even if you drive the route on a daily basis. Caltrans says this is definitely going to take getting used to.

"The merge from central San Rafael on to southbound 101 is a little shorter than it used to be. Until people get used to the new configuration, they may have a little bit of a tough time negotiating it. Overall, since we opened the new connector, traffic is moving smoothly through the corridor," said Jeff Kress, Caltrans engineer.

Caltrans will monitor the situation and see how traffic is moving and may make adjustments if they need to.

This all part of a $128 million widening project along 101 south through San Rafael. It's expected to be completed in December. But transportation officials say between now and then, commuters will need a lot of patience.


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