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SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA / A news summary

91 Freeway Additions Finished After 40 Months

May 06, 2000

ORANGE COUNTY — The detour signs on the 91 Freeway came down this week, easing the commute through one of the busiest sections of Orange County.

While major road construction continues on the Santa Ana Freeway and on nearby city streets in Anaheim, the end of the 40-month, $180-million effort to improve the 91 should make the commute through the heart of Orange County a little less arduous.

The project added carpool lanes along 11.5 miles between the Los Angeles County line and the Orange Freeway, a direct carpool connector at the 91 interchange with California 57, which opened last year, and a connector road to ease congestion near the busy Disneyland area.

It is the fourth of six major freeway improvements, made possible by Measure M funding, to be completed.

"What you are seeing now is the end of the massive freeway widening projects," said Dave Simpson, a spokesman for the Orange County Transportation Authority. "The next step is turning toward fixing those choke points throughout the county."

Measure M, the half-cent sales tax passed by county voters in 1990 for transportation projects, provided about $1.3 billion in funds for six freeway projects.

Since it passed, Caltrans and the Orange County authority have completed work on the El Toro Y, the I-5 in South County, the Orange Freeway widening and now the 91 improvement project.

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