Update: Highway 50 downtown lanes reopen as weekend work ends early

All lanes on Highway 50 over the Pioneer Bridge downtown were reopened as of 3 p.m. Sunday, Caltrans officials report, after nearly two days of major lane closures for freeway and bridge deck rehabilitation work.

The reopening clears up what had become a tough weekend of congestion and back-ups on the freeway connecting Sacramento and West Sacramento over the Sacramento River. Officials originally had scheduled the reopening for sometime early tomorrow morning, before commute hour, but crews with the Myers & Sons Construction were able to speed the work, Caltrans spokeswoman Deanna Shoopman said.

The work caught many drivers by surprise Saturday, causing hour-long delays. Delays were shorter on Sunday.

Caltrans Shoopman warned that crews will be back next weekend with similar work on the eastbound side of the freeway, and drivers are bing asked to avoid the freeway if possible.

The closures coincided this weekend with a major music event, the Aftershock Festival, which drew 15,000 people to Discovery Park Saturday and Sunday.

The $26 million “Sac Decked Out” project, which has been underway for months, is designed to improve deck durability and smoothness on the Pioneer Bridge and the freeway sections leading up to it. Myers & Sons also conducted the Fix50 work to the east of this project site earlier this year.

Caltrans also is alerting motorists that Interstate 5 will be reduced to one lane in each direction just south of Pocket Road on Monday and Tuesday nights. Traffic restrictions will be in place south of Florin Road in Sacramento for southbound traffic and south of Laguna Boulevard for northbound traffic. The speed limit will be temporarily reduced to 50 mph in the work zone.

Here is the I-5 closure schedule:

Monday: 9 p.m. to 6 a.m. Tuesday

Tuesday: 9 p.m. to 6 a.m. Wednesday