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Caltrans begins express lane project on I-80 between Vacaville and Fairfield

Caltrans says the express lane project will provide some relief between the Bay Area and the Sacramento region.

VACAVILLE, Calif — On Monday, Caltrans and the Solano Transportation Authority started a project to add toll express lanes on Interstate 80 between Fairfield and Vacaville in hopes of alleviating traffic.

According to Caltrans, the project will "add express lanes on Interstate 80 between Red Top Road in Fairfield and the Leisure Town Road in Vacaville just east of the I-80/I-580 Interchange."

Caltrans says the three-year project will involve building new express lanes and converting existing carpool lanes into express lanes.

According to Caltrans, they will be building "ten miles of new express lanes in the median of I-80 between Airbase Parkway in Fairfield and Leisure Town Road in Vacaville, just east of the I-505 Interchange." 

Later on, they will be converting the remaining eight miles of carpool lanes into express lanes between Red Top Road and Airbase Parkway in Fairfield.

Nearly 250,000 cars pass through the Air Base Parkway on I-80 each day, Caltrans says. This express lane project comes as the traffic in the Fairfield-Vacaville corridor is expected to increase by 35% by 2040. 

"The joined facilities will create two 18-mile-long express lanes that will vastly improve transit travel times, particularly because the stretch between Air Base Parkway and Leisure Town Road is not currently served by carpool lanes," a statement from Caltrans says.

In order to use the express lanes, drivers must have a FasTrak Flex transponder. Caltrans says cars with three or more occupants will be allowed to use the express lanes for free. However, those with one or two occupants would be required to pay a toll. The traffic control center can adjust the toll for non-carpoolers based on the amount of congestion on the roadway.

Caltrans says over half of the $244 million needed to fund the project will be coming from money set aside by Senate Bill 1, the Road Repair and Accountability Act of 2017.

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