I-5 (Avenida Pico to San Juan Creek Road)

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  • Avenida Pico to San Juan Creek Road

    Project Contacts 1 of 2

    Associate Community Relations Specialist

    (714) 560-5766

    Closures and Detours


    Closures and Detours

    Stay Informed

Overview Tab Content:

  • Overview

    This 5.7-mile project extends from Avenida Pico in San Clemente to San Juan Creek Road in San Juan Capistrano. The four-year, $230 million project will:

    • Add a carpool lane in both directions on I-5 from Avenida Pico to San Juan Creek Road;
    • Improve the sight distance on the southbound curve north of PCH;
    • Reconstruct the interchange at Avenida Pico, including widening the northbound Avenida Pico on-ramp to three lanes, and providing dual left-turn lanes to both on-ramps; and
    • Add sound walls where needed.

    Project Update

Details Tab Content:

  • Avenida Pico Interchange Improvements

    Purchase on Pico

    We are committed to assisting local businesses during the reconstruction of the I-5 / Avenida Pico Interchange in San Clemente. Businesses are invited to participate in our “Purchase on Pico” Program, free of charge.


    This $230 million project is funded in part by Measure M2, Orange County's half-cent sales transportation tax. In addition, OCTA is funding the work with a combination of Measure M2 local sales tax and state and federal funding.


    The project is being constructed in three segments: Avenida Pico to Avenida Vista Hermosa; Avenida Vista Hermosa to Pacific Coast Highway; and Pacific Coast Highway to San Juan Creek Road.

    Flatiron Construction began work on the first segment, focused on the Avenida Pico Interchange, in February 2015. Work on the second segment, also being done by Flatiron, started in September 2014 and includes construction of retaining walls and sound walls, as well as on- and off-ramp improvements. Shimmick Construction has the third segment, centered primarily on the PCH / I-5 interchange, where work began in February 2014.


Detours Tab Content:

  • Daytime Northbound I-5 Lane Closure

    Expect delays; please allow extra travel time. 

    Lanes will be reduced on northbound I-5 in San Clemente from Avenida Palizada to Avenida Vista Hermosa from 10 p.m. Friday, March 30, to noon Saturday, March 31, for final paving work.

    This final paving work was scheduled to be completed last weekend, but had to be postponed because of the rain.

    The work includes: grinding existing asphalt, placing the final asphalt cap and restriping lane lines using temporary paint. Completing this work during nighttime only shifts would require at least five shifts, which would expose motorists to uneven pavement, bumps and loose gravel for four days.

    Instead, the construction team chose to do the grinding in one night shift (Thursday night), and complete the asphalt cap and lane restriping in one extended 14-hour shift (10 p.m. Friday to noon Saturday). This will provide a better, smoother final product.

    The Caltrans Traffic Management Center (TMC) approved the extended lane closures that begin tonight. The TMC analyzes traffic impacts using data that includes holiday weekends like this one, and concluded the impact would be minimal.

    To reduce the impact during the closures, the newly opened carpool lane, when available, will be open to all motorists.

    Please note:

    • Placement of the permanent, thermoplastic striping cannot be done immediately after final paving because the asphalt must cure for seven days. There will be nighttime-only closures on northbound I-5 to install that striping.
    • There also are "punch list" items that must be completed. These items are identified by Caltrans during safety reviews at the end of the project.
    • There is one signal pole on the southbound Pico on-ramp that needs to be manufactured. It is expected to be delivered and installed in mid- to late May.

    Construction on this project to extend the HOV lanes from San Juan Creek Road in San Juan Capistrano to Avenida Pico in San Clemente began in March 2014. From the beginning, work was scheduled to take four years. In that time, four bridges were widened, nearly 12 miles of new lanes were added, 18 ramps were realigned, 21 walls were built and the Pico interchange was reconstructed. All of this was completed while maintaining traffic lanes for nearly 250,000 motorists who drove through the project area each day.

    Thank you for your patience as we work to wrap up the project.

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Response to Comments

The Final Environmental Document will include response to comments and is anticipated to be published in late 2018.

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