Placer County officials say they have entered the fourth and final phase of a decade-long effort to rebuild and widen Auburn-Folsom Road, a major thoroughfare between Placer and Sacramento counties.
The $20-million project on the section of Auburn-Folsom between Douglas Road and the city of Folsom is expected to be finished in August, Placer County Public Works Director Ken Grehm said.
Grehm acknowledged the construction caused commuter complaints, mainly from numerous lane closures.
“It’s been a traffic mess,” he said. “The good news is we are almost done, and it is going to be a whole lot better once we are open in August.”
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The Placer County portion of the road widening began in 2006, much of it involving widening the road to four lanes. Work has been start-and-stop over the years, in part because various permits limited environmentally sensitive work to certain months.
The most recent delay came last year when officials had to go through legal proceedings to acquire portions of properties for widening, Grehm said.
The road is a busy one, carrying 40,000 vehicles a day, many of them commuters taking Douglas Boulevard from Interstate 80 to areas around Folsom, Rancho Cordova and elsewhere in Sacramento and El Dorado counties - and vice versa.
Grehm said there has been discussion of doing work on the more rural area of Auburn-Folsom Road north of Douglas Boulevard, but there are no plans to do so.
“The current consensus is people do not want to widen north of Douglas,” Grehm said.