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Rancho Ortega Blog discusses matters of public interest in South Orange County, including the communities of San Juan Capistrano, Ladera Ranch and Rancho Mission Viejo.

The writings of Don Juan Ortega on the Rancho Ortega Blog are the personal views of the author. This blog is not authored by nor does it have any affiliation whatsoever with any other person, place or entity using the name "Rancho Ortega" (or any similar name).

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I-5 South County Improvement Project Construction Update

We wish this was an April Fool’s Day prank, but alas, South County residents are currently monitoring three massive construction projects going on simultaneously on the I-5 freeway. Below is the latest information about the I-5 South County Improvement Project that stretches from Avenida Pico in San Clemente to San Juan Creek Road in San [...]

Carmageddon, The Sequel: Avenida Pico Construction Begins This Weekend

Just when you had figured out how to maneuver the various lane reductions and freeway closures in and around the Ortega Highway/I-5 interchange, comes now the Avenida Pico improvement project. Construction begins this weekend on $249 million project, officially titled the I-5 South County Improvement Project, to rebuild the Avenida Pico interchange in San Clemente [...]

Groundbreaking Tomorrow on 6 Mile I-5/Avenida Pico Project

Tomorrow is the groundbreaking of the $249 million project to add carpool lanes on I-5 in each direction between San Juan Capistrano and San Clemente. The nearly 6 mile project extends from Avenida Pico in San Clemente to San Juan Creek Road in San Juan Capistrano. The project will:

Add a carpool lane in both [...]

OCTA Hosting I-5/Pico Open House Tomorrow

OCTA is hosting an open house tomorrow for the public to learn more about the upcoming I-5/Avenida Pico improvement project. From OCTA:

OCTA Plans Open Houses in South County

The public will have two opportunities to learn about upcoming I-5 improvements

ORANGE – Open houses are scheduled in San Clemente and [...]

OCTA Schedules Two Open Houses to Discuss I-5/Avenida Pico Project

OCTA has announced two open houses where the public can learn more about the I-5/Avenida Pico improvement project affecting San Clemente and San Juan Capistrano. From the OCTA press release:

OCTA Plans Open Houses in South County

The public will have two opportunities to learn about upcoming I-5 improvements

ORANGE – Open [...]

The Sun Came Out and the Cars Kept Moving

Like clockwork, as soon as the calendar flipped over to June, with it arrived the gloom. It was overcast, drizzly and dreary all weekend. Perhaps that was metaphorically appropriate. Was it the calendar or the Ortega bridge lane reduction that brought June gloom upon us?

As readers know, crews closed the southern half of the [...]

Carmageddon Is Here: Ortega Bridge Lane Reduction Starts This Week

It’s here. Carmageddon, South County style.

Tomorrow, “on Saturday, June 1 at 10 p.m., crews will reduce lanes on the Ortega Highway bridge over the I-5 freeway to two lanes in either direction in preparation for upcoming demolition activities on the south half of the bridge.” This configuration will remain for approximately one year as [...]

Update on I-5/Avenida Pico Project

The construction project underway at Ortega Highway is far from the only major South County transportation project on the calendar. Recently, OCTA met with local stakeholders to discuss the timeline and plans for the I-5/Avenida Pico project. According to the report:

More than 20 community leaders from San Clemente and Dana Point, including San Clemente [...]

A Summary of the I-5/Avenida Pico Project and a Glimpse at Future South County Transportation Improvement Projects

While San Juan Capistrano and surrounding communities prepare for “Carmageddon” in the form of the Ortega/I-5 interchange project, Caltrans and OCTA have several other major South County transportation improvement projects in the works. While some are substantial projects in their own right, the good news is that none of them pose the same risk of [...]