What’s the construction at Freeway, Cal Expo in Sacramento?

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As you drive down the Capital Highway near Cal Expo, you might wonder why large cranes are sticking out of the American River.

You’re not the only one. A handful of readers contacted Bee Curious to ask what was going on.

“What construction is going on near Cal Expo at the American River?” asked a reader.

“These two cranes rising from the ground as they approach or pass Cal Expo? What are they up or down to? » another wrote.

As part of “Bee Curious: What is That Thing?”, a miniseries of our community project, The Sacramento Bee spoke with the California Department of Transportation and an executive associated with the project to find the answer.

What’s going on at the capital highway?

Restoration is underway for part of the Capital City Freeway, or Business 80.

The cranes that tower over the freeway are part of a project called SAC-51 American River Bridge Deck Replacement, which involves removing and replacing the current concrete deck, said Angela Daprato, chief information officer. public at Caltrans.

Specifically, the stretch from approximately Sutter’s Landing Regional Park to Exposition Boulevard,

The bridge is the concrete surface that cars drive when they’re on the bridge, said George Delano, project manager for Granite Construction, Inc. Granite, the company that won the project.

“The bridge was built in the early 1950s, widened in the 1970s, and the deck is deteriorating and needs to be replaced in order to keep traffic flowing,” Delano said.

When the project is complete, the bridge will have wider shoulders and a bike path behind a barrier on the upstream side of the bridge, he said. They will widen the bridge to maintain traffic during construction, but at the end of the project there will still be three lanes of traffic.

Daprato emphasized that this was not a bridge widening project, but rather a replacement project.

So what exactly are the cranes “up or down?” They are used for driving piles for the foundation of the bridge.

“They moved debris and cleared the area,” Daprato said in an email to The Bee.

Crews are currently working under the bridge.

How much money does this project cost?

The exact price of the project has not yet been determined.

An initial estimate of the total cost of the project, as of September, is $183.5 billion, Daprato said. So far, the project has received nearly $37.5 million, under the Road Repair and Accountability Act of 2017, which increases transportation funding.

How long will the construction take?

The project is currently in the “pre-construction” phase.

This involves the contractor reviewing the constructability of the site, evaluating engineers’ reviews, making construction estimates and other recommendations, Daprato said. She added that construction of the bridge deck is expected to start in 2023 when there will be lane closures on the capital’s highway.

The multi-phase project is expected to be completed in 2025.

Ever wondered about an obscure building, plaque, or other quirky sights in Sacramento? Ask us the question in the form below and we will find the answer. or email [email protected]

This story was originally published September 10, 2022 5:00 a.m.

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Hanh Truong is a service desk reporter for The Sacramento Bee. She was previously a freelance journalist, covering education and culture for PBS SoCal and music for buzzbands.la.

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