NIPOMO, Calif. -- A construction project in Nipomo to improve the traffic flow at the busy Tefft Street/Highway 101 interchange is scheduled to kick off on Monday.
The project will relieve congestion and improve pedestrian access at the intersection, which is heavily impacted throughout out the day, especially during commute times.
"It's horrible!" said Alicia Wolff, who drives the area frequently. "It's horrible. It's backed up all the time. It's stop and go. Stop and go. Stop and go. It's horrible."
The intersection is also severely impacted during weekends. At times, congestion is so significant, traffic on the two off-ramps is backed up onto the freeway.
"You have to wait a while, that's for sure," Charleigh Gonzalez of Nipomo. ""It gets backed up now lately, especially if the swap meet is going on, oh man, I'd say you can get stuck sometimes 30 minutes."
According to the San Luis Obispo County Public Works Department, the project will widen the northbound and southbound off-ramps to add additional turn lanes, installing new traffic signals, modify existing traffic signal timing, construct ADA ramps at the off-ramp intersections, and make improvements to drainage systems.
"I'm excited!" said Gonzalez. "If that's really going to happen that would be awesome!"
The County is advising the public that traffic control, shoulder closures, and flagging will be in effect during construction.
Drivers are advised to adjust their travel plans and consider alternate routes while work is taking place.
During construction, there will be intermittent nighttime closures of the northbound and southbound off-ramps.
Off-ramp closures will be held between 10 p.m. and 5 a.m.
The Willow Road off-ramp to the north, and the Highway 166 off-ramp to the south, may be used as detours during the nighttime Tefft Street closures.
Construction is scheduled to last through November, but may last longer depending on potential weather delays.
"It can't come soon enough," said Wolff. "It will help, especially on the weekends. Nipomo is growing and it will help tremendously."
The County said the project will cost $1,520,200, and is being funded by the San Luis Obispo Council of Governments and County Road Improvement Funds.